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Cataclaw

Game Thread | Habs vs. Rangers | 12/01/08

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I miss maybe two or three Habs games in a season....I'm glad tonight was one of those nights.

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Wow ... that was some kind of no-show by the habs , it rarely happens on the road.

The ranglers really have our number though and they didn't even break a sweat.

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Well, as stomach-churning as this is, there are some positives, long-term:

Smoke = gone (The sooner the better - probably until the end of the season, though.)

Breezer = gone

Two of Dandy / Boullion / Kosto / Begin / Streit = gone (Dandy and Kosto?)

As for Huet, let him get his 6 mil / season somewhere else.

I so agree wit ya there.

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Not that bad a choice. A right-handed shot who can take the faceoff if Koivu had got waived off is logical. Only problem is that the only guy fitting the bill is, well, Smolinski. :(

It was a faceoff decision.

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Ok...just watched the highlights. I can't fault Huet on any of the first three goals; Rangers right in prime real estate with no defensive pressure on them...you'd expect guys to bury chances that good. The fourth was a stinker, but how anyone can criticize Huet on the other goals baffles me. Looked like the team in front of him just plain sucked and hung him out to dry.

As for Huet, let him get his 6 mil / season somewhere else.

Ok...so who do you throw in there next season if you let Huet walk? Who can you trade for? Because Carey Price sure as heck isn't ready.

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Ok...just watched the highlights. I can't fault Huet on any of the first three goals; Rangers right in prime real estate with no defensive pressure on them...you'd expect guys to bury chances that good. The fourth was a stinker, but how anyone can criticize Huet on the other goals baffles me. Looked like the team in front of him just plain sucked and hung him out to dry.

Ok...so who do you throw in there next season if you let Huet walk? Who can you trade for? Because Carey Price sure as heck isn't ready.

I am glad I missed the game. Price got rocked tonight in Hamilton. I was at the game.

He gave up 5 goals on 12 shots and was yanked 5 minutes into the second.

The first goal was bad, but 2 of the next 3 were cross ice empty netters and 1 was a breakaway.

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Well, tonight was pretty much a losing effort by everyone, but can some please explain why Smolinski saw so much PP time? When will Carbo understand that he is not an offensive player?

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smo on the 5 -3 ????/

What I was thinking. Sometimes Carbo's ideas of who to reward and who to punish really puzzle me.

But anyways, I'm glad they picked tonight to play like crap so I had no qualms about watching the NFL game. And I changed back just in time to see the Kosty bros team up for a goal. As bad as we played tonight, we really could have been in the game with all the powerplay opportunities we had.

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Ok...so who do you throw in there next season if you let Huet walk? Who can you trade for? Because Carey Price sure as heck isn't ready.

Frankly, I don't know. But Huet will not sign a two year or three year, 4m or less contract, just so we can wait for Price. We'll have to make a decision on this.

I think Huet, in terms of his stats only (save % espec), will get a great offer, and we'll have to let him walk. Yes, the goals tonight were not his fault, but this guy never steals a game for us. He has proven only that he can be very good for some stretches of a regular season. He has also proven to have terrible 60-minute concentration - at least one bad goal a game, plus idiotic puck-playing / wandering decisions. I really don't know about a replacement, but the only way I can see Huet here next year is a sign-long-great-money-and-two-season-later trade, or whenever Price is well and truly ready. No way this will happen cheap enough for us, though. Maybe bring in an older guy who knows he is the starter / mentor type?

Connected to this, if neither Price nor Halak prove they are NHL-starter material (I mean top-ten pimp-winner guys), then we should begin the search anew. Huet I just feel is never going to be that guy, never going to be a goalie who will give his whole team a feeling that they can take certain risks because the last line of defence is that air-tight. He has really good stopgap written all over him, especially mentally. A big thing in this, IMO, is breakaways. Frankly, whenever I see anyone break on Brodeur or Luongo, I feel they will be stopped, that the goalie looks bigger. There is a huge psychological fear-factor to playing those guys. Roy had it better than anyone. Kiprusoff usually has it; Hasek had it big-time; Nabokov has it, Giguere has it (don't know about this season, admittedly), Bryzgalov looks like he's got it - might have always had it; Lundquist is 99% there, DiPietro is a step behind him, etc etc etc. You even get that feeling with Huet? You think anyone in the league gets that feeling?

When teams go on big win streaks, their goalie invariably steals one or two games along the way. The Habs never get a streak beyond three games, hmm...

Edited by tokyohabs

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Frankly, I don't know. But Huet will not sign a two year or three year, 4m or less contract, just so we can wait for Price. We'll have to make a decision on this.

I think Huet, in terms of his stats only (save % espec), will get a great offer, and we'll have to let him walk. Yes, the goals tonight were not his fault, but this guy never steals a game for us. He has proven only that he can be very good for some stretches of a regular season. He has also proven to have terrible 60-minute concentration - at least one bad goal a game, plus idiotic puck-playing / wandering decisions. I really don't know about a replacement, but the only way I can see Huet here next year is a sign-long-great-money-and-two-season-later trade, or whenever Price is well and truly ready. No way this will happen cheap enough for us, though. Maybe bring in an older guy who knows he is the starter / mentor type?

Connected to this, if neither Price nor Halak prove they are NHL-starter material (I mean top-ten pimp-winner guys), then we should begin the search anew. Huet I just feel is never going to be that guy, never going to be a goalie who will give his whole team a feeling that they can take certain risks because the last line of defence is that air-tight. He has really good stopgap written all over him, especially mentally. A big thing in this, IMO, is breakaways. Frankly, whenever I see anyone break on Brodeur or Luongo, I feel they will be stopped, that the goalie looks bigger. There is a huge psychological fear-factor to playing those guys. Roy had it better than anyone. Kiprusoff usually has it; Hasek had it big-time; Nabokov has it, Giguere has it (don't know about this season, admittedly), Bryzgalov looks like he's got it - might have always had it; Lundquist is 99% there, DiPietro is a step behind him, etc etc etc. You even get that feeling with Huet? You think anyone in the league gets that feeling?

When teams go on big win streaks, their goalie invariably steals one or two games along the way. The Habs never get a streak beyond three games, hmm...

I think we all need to take a deep breath and relax.

Our team played a stinker tonight, its going to happen to the best of teams.

Huet, is not a stud goalie that can carry a team, but he's way above average when

you use hin twice a week. He seems to wear down when used more. Thats why I

believe he would be a perfect platoon type to ease Price into the league. And those

type of goalies don't cost you 7M a year.

And, yes, I've seen Huet steal us a game or TWO !!!

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Huet has stolen a lot of games for this team. Lately, he hasn't, but he has still gotten the W.

Tonight, nothing was working. You could just see the wind get knocked out of their sails. I can't wait until the team is mature and can handle diversity better, but it's a maturity thing. You all know how frustrating it is when you play sports, and you are playing well. It's like a high. The flipside of that is when you play poorly, you clutch the stick, and overthink things.

Tonight, nothing went right. Top 5 worst game of the year. It's one game, and I was over it as soon as it was over.

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First of all..I have to say this again...Josh Gorges SUCKS. He is no better than Rivet...in fact he is starting to convince me that he is worse! He needs to be sent down....he sucks...period. With regards to the team tonight...we had MORE than enough chances to be in the game tonight. 8 powerplays and one goal to show for...including TWO five on 3's in which we cant capitalize on? Give me a break!! Our 5 on 5 play was not even marginal..it was simply piss poor. I could not find one positive in this game tonight. In fact, while I am at it i will also bring this point to the table...when is Carbonneau going to learn that Higgins is not a powerplay type player??? But there is nothing to panic about...it's just a few small things that need adjustments. Smolinski is just a waste this year...he has not impressed me whatsoever..on that note.....why was he on the 5 on 3?? Awful coaching move there by Carbo. We have too many "energy" type players on this team..for example: Streit, Lapierre, Ryder, Latendresse, Begin, Kostopoulis, Dandenault. We need more finesse and depth players IMO. To be honest, it seemed like the whole team was flat-footed out there tonight and the guys were simply being outworked. But, on another note you cannot complain that the team has played some great hockey in its last 11 games 6-2-3 is not bad at all...Points in 9 of 11 games. Lets hope these little things all come together and everything will go back to normal next game (as it should). :hlogo:

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True, true, I've calmed down a bit. I admit I have seen Huet steal games before. Blind passion, sorry. He is definitely better than average guys like Mason, Ward, Biron.

I don't think Huet will accept being that platoon player. At this point, he'll demand a fat contract - within reason; if someone will offer it, go get it.

Maybe Gainey will just run the year with him? Let Price get the rest of the season in Hamilton, Huet go through the season and playoffs, without intent to re-sign him; or at least make him a decent offer. Perhaps Bob is gambling that the market will be poor for starting goalies (see Bryzgalov on waivers).

I forgot to mention Ryder as gone also.

Anyway, two more road games plus big one v. Pens. Make it count, lads. Go Habs!

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3rd game in a row where I have to say "Gorges Sucks" before the end of the 1rst period.

I consider him our most underrated player. He's one of the only players who actually wins his battles.

Not with that effort in front of him. I do believe he is capable of winning a series if he has a decent team. He won't win one all by himself, but there are only a couple of goalies that could.

He can win a series but it wouldn't be because of him. He's just too inconsistant of a goalie to be relied on, especially since he seems to crack in pressure situations (could have something to do with our terrible home record). The games we win are always 5-2 type games - we're relying on our offence and PP this season, as opposed to the goalie, like we used to.

I think the stat guy drank with Ryder and they put something in everyone's

Gatorade. They all skated and played like him .

Koivu, Smolinski and Markov are my three goats for tonight.

I respect Carbo decision to mess around with the lines, the players messed with

him so he can mess with the team, he worked more than the whole team.

Except thew 5-3 choices, this i do not accept.

Huet was not bad he was double shotted and his team was awful, this is a team

loss not a Huet loss.

My main goat is Koivu who was invisible for the xth consecutive game. He isn't earning his paycheque, his C, his icetime or his #1 centre role. If this guy doesn't want to play here, he should tell Gainey and we'll trade him. If not, he better do something - because right now, the only thing he's leading the team in is penalty minutes.

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People are forgetting Huet and Price already? They are both excellent goalies that can carry a team. Just because they have bad nights...

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We always suck against the Rangers for some reason.

I was flipping between a very exciting football game, a very exciting Ottawa and Detroit match up and a not so fun to watch habs game.

Forget the score, Ottawa dominated Detroit.

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I would have no problems platooning Halak and Price next season. Both kids are tough competitors and I'm sure they would be motivated by a healthy competition. Price was in a "nothing to lose" situation with the veteran Huet in front of him; but it'd be different with a fellow talented kid.

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Very poor showing. I guess we were due for one of these. I only hope it is a one off. Glad the next game is on the road.

Hats off to Rangers for the PK exibition. Very well executed. Hope those tapes don't make the rounds although few teams are mature enough to pull it off.

Huet did okay, could have had the 4th for sure, can't be blamed though, very poor team performance.

Breezer played a very good game. He made some plays on the PP to hold the puck in the offensive zone that were quite stellar.

Lets hope for a better outing next time. Halak in L Isle ? When is O'Byrne back?

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Lets hope for a better outing next time. Halak in L Isle ? When is O'Byrne back?

3-4 weeks, prolly.

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Some people got carryed by the ten last games.

It's a game of up and downs and sometimes 1-2 factors can make a combative attitude

into a position game.

When Lapierre came up he did with energy and still his combative.

But one part if his trio is totally messed up. Ryder.

Smolinski is constantly breaking the team spirit. It's not the same team when he is in.

Every part of a team counts and he is clearly here for a good time, playing with care for

himself because he knows it is is last season.

Defesnse is ok, goalies are ok, last night lost came with the mess up of Markov on Drury goal. Smolinski missing the puck twice near the goal. 5-3 not being able to score by having Koivu, Smolinski and Breezer fighting with the puck while Kovalev was covered.

No need to blame Huet but i remeber Halak having a great fame against the Isles last year at Uniondale.

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I think there were a few reasons that Smoke was on the 5 -3 (althought I was disappointed that he was, i have thought about it over night).

1. The team was sucking so he might have been doing this to send a message to the one or two players who figured they should have been on the PP.

2. He is trying to get Smo going.

3. Smo is a right hand shot, could take the draw if Koivu gets tossed and was perfect in the spot they planted him on the PP. They probably were practicing this based on how they set it up. If he wasn't such a useless tool he might have made Carbo look great when he made that nice pass across or tap in goal. (or takin a draw). unfortunately, he looked like the rest of them and took a low percentage flip at the goalie and a bad pass to nobody at the far point. :)

4. He wants Chips back, so he is proving to Gainey that Smo is useless. :)

In any case, I am not going to complain about Carbo because there are valid reason and frankly, the team was playing so badly I don't think it would have mattered anyway.

Finally, when we get these losses people tend to whine about the role players (Breezer, Smo, etc), but the fact remains that these are not the guys getting the big bucks to win us games. We should be questioning the effort of our top players, who apparently didn't even get on the plane to go to NY...

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I flipped the game midway through the 2nd. Ya our boys were fluffy. I wouldn't say they didn't show up though. The Rags were ON. That's all. They had such a great game that we looked off. It's going to happen in an 82 game schedule. Now what I'm excited about is Ottawa losing Heatley and a possible slump. The Habs need to put together a solid 5 to 6 games and we could challenge for first place. Our next two weeks seems a little tougher then ottawa's though which kills my plan almost right off the bat. Geez I'd love to see this team in first for at least a day or two this year.

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People who are after Smoke and Breezer must realize one thing. This is Gainey. BOb from the start of coming to Montreal has always stocked depth players from top to bottom including the 2 minor league affiliates. He is of sound thinking IMO on having the insurance to compensate for team injury. This is why the youth is kept back sometimes. It's annoying when the plumbers don't deliver but in the long run it helps for making the playoffs.

It just so happens that these depth players are not delivering masterful performances like fans wish. But, it's up to the stars to win. Not Breezer and not Smoke. Last night Smolinski blocked some good shots and seemed to play an acceptable rugged game. Brisebois got us a precious goal against Chicago on Tuesday. That seems to have been forgotten. It's true that when we lose, the knives come out from fans for certain players. The whole team was goofy last night by and large.

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True, true, I've calmed down a bit. I admit I have seen Huet steal games before. Blind passion, sorry. He is definitely better than average guys like Mason, Ward, Biron.

I don't think Huet will accept being that platoon player. At this point, he'll demand a fat contract - within reason; if someone will offer it, go get it.

Maybe Gainey will just run the year with him? Let Price get the rest of the season in Hamilton, Huet go through the season and playoffs, without intent to re-sign him; or at least make him a decent offer. Perhaps Bob is gambling that the market will be poor for starting goalies (see Bryzgalov on waivers).

I forgot to mention Ryder as gone also.

Anyway, two more road games plus big one v. Pens. Make it count, lads. Go Habs!

I just have this feeling that Huet might be willing to re-sign with us and be a mentor to

Price. Huet seems to like it here and he has to like whats happening with the organization

right now. But, you know his agent will try to convince him to go UFA and try to get 4-5M

from some team. I think I'd offer him 11M over 3 years. Front load it, 5M the first year,

4m the second and 2M the last. In that way we can move him in his third year if Price

starts to dominate.

But, having a duo of Price and Halak, I can live with that.

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I don't like that people blame Smolinski and Brisebois for the loss. It's not Smolinski's fault that he's trusted on the 5-on-3. He did the best he could. As for Brisebois, he's supposed to be a good powerplay player but had Markov been in his spot they probably would have scored another meaningless goal there (Kovalev was sitting in his usual spot and the lane was open for Markov's traditional diagonal pass). Those were Carbo's decisions though, when our team is blowing the other team out, he uses our young guys a lot but when we are getting blown out, he likes to use the vets and keep the young guys out of it (though he didn't do that with the goalies).

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