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Habs watch: the drive for…70 points?

What a terrible season it has been. Honestly. The Canadiens skate into Calgary tomorrow with a scant 60 points. How is former Flame Rene Bourque doing as a Hab? 6 points. 6. In 22 games. 4 goals. Oh, and 22 hits. That’s one hit a game. Sure, Mike Cammalleri hasn’t lit it up for the Flames, but he’s got 11 points in 21 games, and has scored some key goals. Bottom line: Bourque has been a bust. Hard to forget as the Habs head into the Saddledome.

And that sums it up. Genuinely. The Habs are awful. They are on the verge of, potentially, their worst season since expansion, although one has to figure they get at least 10 points over the final month of the season. However, if they don’t, they’ll fail to match the magic of the 2000-2001 season, which featured a leading scorer with 21 goals. Craig Darby was the 7th highest scorer on that team. If that doesn’t say enough, Trevor Linden was 6th.

So are this season’s Habs that bad? I don’t think so. However, you know what they say: the numbers don’t lie, and the numbers aren’t pretty. If the Oilers win a few games down the stretch, the Blue Jackets will be the only team worse than the Canadiens. That’s remarkable really, because Columbus are very, very bad. The Canadiens of 2012 just seem to have a knack for blowing leads and losing one goal games.

Where to from here? One has to believe that with a showing this bad, Pierre Gauthier is gone. Randy Cunneyworth was as good as gone the day Gauthier apologized publicly for hiring him.

A bright light on the horizon? Well, not really a bright light, but Andrei Markov may be back sometime soon. He was wearing a contact jersey today, which suggests he’s close to a return. Do we call it a return? Let’s refer to it as a debut - it’s been long enough. Bright lights for 2013? Many impressive youngsters, such as Alex Emelin, David Desharnais, Raphael Diaz, and the ever-improving Max Pacioretty. Oh, and let’s not forget the wildcard: what should be a very early first round draft pick (though, knowing how the team has been operated for the past year, they’ll undoubtedly shag this up as well).

However, that seems years away. There are still over a dozen games to slog through, and each of them is as painful as the last. At least tomorrow we get to see a slightly more exciting team in the Flames, though it will be a sorry reminder of a transaction that looks like a write-off today: Cammalleri for Bourque. A final-four team to second last place in two seasons. It’s not long now, Habs fans. The Hockey Gods have turned, and the end is almost near.

Et tu, Brute?

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Comments

tuxedoTshirt's avatar

Bourque has been a bust.

Gauthier could have discovered that by asking anyone who has been a Calgary fan in the last four years.  The guy is over 30…....what the fvck did you expect?  (If it was brief flashes of energetic play, then you are the lucky winner)

Posted by tuxedoTshirt from the Home of the 1937 World Champions on 03/06/12 at 03:29 AM ET

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The fact that this team re-signed Markov shows just how incompetent their front office is. Everyone, Everyone, EVERYONE knew that Markov is ALWAYS injured. I don’t care how talented a player he is, if he can’t play at least 80% of the games, then he is USELESS. Markov has played 52 games in the last 3 seasons!!! What genius said lets give this guy a 3 year contract! Ridiculously stupid! What a year. Fire the coach and pick a replacement and then apologize about who YOU picked as the replacement right after?!?!?!?! Talk about cutting the legs right out from under Cunneyworth. This season is all Gauthier’s fault and I say it’s time to light the torches, grab the pitchforks, and storm the gates!!

Posted by BlackXinu on 03/06/12 at 07:46 AM ET

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I think that Gauthier should be gone as soon as the final whistle is blown in game 82. Shortly, and thought I don’t hold him responsible in the least, Cunneyworth should go to just so the incoming coach has a clean slate. Then, Prise needs to be signed prior to July 1st or an offer sheet from another team might rear its ugly head. There are some building blocks in place, but it’s going to be up to the new GM to make the team function again and make them competitive once more. Also, in 2000-01, Linden had 33 points in 57 games, which is nothing to shake a stick at.

Posted by Etterbeekers on 03/06/12 at 06:53 PM ET

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The Upper Canadien is your one stop shop for all things Montreal Canadiens. Since the summer of 2010, I've been providing Habs related news, notes, and most importantly, opinions. As a blogger, I don't believe it's my job to report the news, it's my privilege to comment on it. You may disagree with what I suggest. In fact, you most likely will. But that's the great part about blogging: it spurs opinion, comment and engages all involved. I've really enjoyed all the debate and commentary from readers thus far and I encourage everyone to respond with ideas on lineups, trades, logos, sweaters, mascots, whatever. The Upper Canadien is a conversation for all hockey fanatics.

I've come to Kukla's Korner with four years of campus radio and three years of sportswriting from my time at Mount Allison University on Canada's East coast. Not only do I not have any professional journalistic training, after five years in the corporate world, I've spent much of the past two years completing an MBA. Business by day, hockey by night, I'm a Canadiens fan through and through. I hope you enjoy reading as much as I do writing.

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