Habs Goalie: Price (L)
Opposition Goalie: Lehtonen (W)
Habs goalscorers: Darche, Gionta
Opposition goalscorers: Burish, Benn, Skrastins, Richards, Eriksson
Price made a great save on Eriksson in the second, but I felt that our second goal was a nicer play. That goal gave the Habs hope; hope for this game, hope that we haven't completely lost it. The goal was crafty and was scored on the PK to boot. Good work by Gionta got him the puck and he quickly fed Gomez. Scott then went u the right side and waited for Gio. Brian took the pass and placed a perfected slap-shot up and over Lehtonen.
Brian Gionta - Game Puck
His goal clinched him the Game Puck, but I felt that a Dome was a certainty. He played well with Scott again tonight and they both benefited a lot for MaxPac too. Gionta now has 12 goals and could still very well hit 30 by the time all is said and done.
Remember when Gomez's line had nothing going? I think that the main reason was Moen being there or when Gomez himself was missing. Well it was more of the same tonight. By benching Kostitsyn we have taken a legitimate sniper away from Pleks and replaced him with a rookie that will be lucky to end with 10 points. Despite it all Tom still played a good game, but when his line is going (with its potent regulars) they can be a whole lot better than good.
With 7 shots (and another 4 misses) Max was looking like he would be bringing home the Game Puck. He unfortunately failed to capitilize though, but he was still worthy of the Dome. He is a different player than the one we saw last year and if he can keep this up it will only get better from here on in.
Some off-nights left the door open for Gill. He also did well to end with a +1 rating. I can't say that I noticed him much, but in a game like this that is about all that I can ask for. It is still frustrating for me that he doesn't use his size or ever shoot hard, but after a season and a half of play like that I can't say that I am surprised.
Jaro did well to stay out of the trouble that his partner was getting into. I actually thought that he didn't have a horrible game in his own end. One thing that I would like to see change, however, is that it would be nice to see him use that shot of his to hit the net. It seems that a lot of his one-timers miss high or wide and that is something that shouldn't be happening so often.
Well that is a blow to the stats. 5 goals on 17 shots (and a few of them weak) is what I call a bad game. Now, he didn't get bounces and not everything was his fault, but it shows that when he isn't on we aren't quite the same team. I won't go on much as we all saw what happened, but if his team can't bail him out of games like this the season could go south (much like it often does around Christmas time) very fast.
Martin listened to Brunet and the rest of the media (mostly the French media) and Kostitsyn sat. It addressed one problem (shut Ben up for one night), but didn't see to help the team. Maybe it will be a wake-up call for AK, but I doubt it. That is because I don't think that he is doing too much different from when he is playing well (scoring goals). We know the type of player that he is and that bothers a lot of people. In an ideal world we could have Darche, Brunet and Patrick Poulin on every line, but we aren't that lucky. We may not be as good of a team with AK the non-50-goalscorer instead of AK the 50-goalscorer, but I think that I can say with certainty we are better with him than without him. A team is made up of a lot of different pieces; tonight we took away a very interesting piece because the people that really run this team yelled quite loud for a change. It is funny that the people that bleed Bleu-Blanc-Rouge the most are those that try and pick apart the team one piece at a time, but it is a sad fact. Once they have their way with Kostitsyn (like they did with Koivu and Kovalev) you can bet that Plekanec could be next. Ridiculous? Just try and remember when they were telling us that we don't need Markov. Still believe them Pierre Gauthier? I hope not.