Saturday, January 22, 2011

Game #49

Saku Wins; Helps Us Get A Point


Date: 22/1/2011
Opponent: Ducks
Location: Montreal

Loss: 3-4 (SO)

Habs Goalie: Price (L)
Opposition Goalie: Hiller (W)

Habs goalscorers: Pacioretty (2), Darche
Opposition goalscorers: Fowler, Ryan (1, SO), Perry

Play of the game

The comeback goal, was of course a highlight for the Habs, but if we look at the event on a whole then the play of the game has to be the ovations that Saku got. He got a huge ovation before the first face-off and then another when he was announced as the second star (robbed of the first star thanks to Habs' questionable policy of making OT goalscorers (even in the shootout), regardless of how they played, the first star). It was great to see how much Montreal means to him and how much he means to Montreal. Who knows, maybe one day he'll be back.

Dome hockey team

The 6 players we're playing in a no changes, do or die contest in the dome

Max Pacioretty - Game Puck
There was some great fight from MaxPac tonight and it paid off with two goals. 3 in 2 nights is a lot better than any Hamilton call-up would (or has) done which is why it is great that Tuesday's injury wasn't as bad as initially expected. If he keeps playing like this until, and when, Camms is back we'll be quite alright.

Tomas Plekanec
He only got one assist tonight, but I thought played a very good game. He was instrumental on the tying goal which got the Habs an always welcome point. There were a lot of chances which developed thanks to his quick foot speed, all of which made him look so much better than Anaheim's defencemen.

Saku Koivu
Why not? Two years of not being able to write in here about him, I may as well now. Saku didn't have the best game, but I'd have him on the ice all night as he invoked so many special memories. Every time that I heard his name it took me a second to remember that he didn't play for us; I guess it still hasn't sunk in. He certainly contributed to the Habs success tonight as his 3 penalties led to 2 PP goals, one of which was the tying goal. Iam sure that he was thrilled that both teams got points as both teams need him. For you purists, I have chosen a third Hab for the dome and Topham has the selection marked in his statistics.


PK Subban
There were times that PK looked pretty awkward tonight on some of his pivots, but those low points were overshadowed by his strong offensive presence. He attempted an incredible 16 shots which shows just how much this kid wants to shoot. Only 6, however, got through, so he is still having that same release problem, but I do think that it is getting better. He has so much energy and is so fit that I am glad he is getting tons of ice time. He should be able to chew up a lot of regular season minutes as resting our veterans in the press-box isn't a very likely scenario with the injuries, so we have to find ways to get their ice-time down.

James Wisniewski
I wasn't a huge fan of the Wis tonight in his own end, but did like what he did in their half. Hammer, Spacek and Gill all showed signs of fatigue tonight so it was good that James was good to go. In fact, he played a whopping 30 minutes and was able to kill a big chunk of our D's ice-time. Knowing that, in general, he can hold his own in all aspects of play makes using him that much quite a good thing.


Carey Price
This was an average game from Price, but certainly he did enough to make the dome. I can't say that he really stood out for being that bad or that good tonight, he kind of just blended in. Knowing that he doesn't get a week for the All-Star break off (like his teammates) may have been good reason to give him last night against Ottawa off (I mean, I could have been in nets and we still would have won), but that is done. I may rest him on Tuesday, but have a strong feeling that JM won't.


It was funny that Lapierre got booed tonight. The former poster-boy of this club probably didn't expect that, but apparently we boo anyone who used to play for us (other than Saku). I suppose that I am not that surprised myself, though, as he did request a trade and made a lot of people think that he thought he was way better than he was. Maybe he thought that he was the type of player that we saw last April/May and not the one that we saw the other 120 games of the past 2 seasons. The night was still Koivu night, though, and Max's appearance didn't really matter.

There was still hockey to be played, though, and early on the Habs weren't doing much of that. Luckily for us, however, the Ducks weren't firing on all cylinders so on the game went. On a whole we probably ended up playing better than them, and Hiller better than Price, so a tie was just about right. We have one more game before the break and it would be nice to pick up points, but road games in Philly are never that easy. Win or lose, however, won't really matter. What matters is that after 50 games we will have at least 59 points in the bank (a 97-point pace). The 32 games after the break will certainly be tough, but I honestly believe that our fate is in our own hands. If we want to make the playoffs, there is no reason to believe that we won't.

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