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The last 13 games


Trizzak
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In the last 13 games of the season, Montreal faces NYR x 2, Ottawa x 2, Toronto x 2, Atlanta, Tampa, Buffalo, Chicago, NYI, Boston and Pittsburgh. Anyone shaking in their boots?

Only 2 of those teams have more points than Monteal, and Chicago is only a mere 3 points up.

4 of those games are against teams Montreal is directly jostling with for a playoff spot.

8 of those games are at home, including a 5 game homestand to end March.

Basically what I am getting at here is that this schedule is tailor made for Montreal to make the playoffs. 7 games are against the weak sisters of the league, only 1 game is against a powerhouse, only 5 games are against teams hungry to make the playoffs with 1 of them happening outside the conference, etc, etc.

If the Canadiens fail to make the playoffs this year, after receiving this silver platter, the collapse in the centennial year just becomes all the more embarrassing. Shape up, boys! Play with a bit of pride and desire!

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That's the thing. Is there *anything* in the way the team has played and is playing to make us believe that these guys will sieze the opportunity being handed to them by the schedule? When you consider that they've recently lost to Atlanta and the Islanders, it doesn't seem to matter who they play. Right now they are one of the very worst teams in the NHL. (Talent wise, they're actually upper-ecehlon, but that's not the point is it?) So I take small comfort from the schedule. In fact, with these guys I take small comfort in anything. :puke:

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I think the guys right now dont even believe in themselves.

And I'll keep hammering the same nail: leadership is absent on this team.

Only thing that can turn this team around is for Kovy to play inspired, pair his efforts with Plex's hot streak and drag this team out of its funk.

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And I'll keep hammering the same nail: leadership is absent on this team.

:clap:

Careful tho...the Koivu fanboys will have their panties in a bunch if you say that too loudly.

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Kovalev and Latendresse are a major boost for next game.

Two major reasons.

Kovalev for the PP. We need to get it back.

Latendresse for physical presence and puck retiliation in the opponent zone

creating chances of scoring on what could be a very interesting third line.

I am not slumbing into desperation and calling players names, i have watched

my previous posts and i am not a player basher. Sometimes but i stupidly believe

intentions are very good from the players. I stand by them all until they are out of the

pictures this year, i will as a true fan should be there for the good and the bad.

Hopefully there is going to be something good happening, thi being said ER is leaving for

Aspen with the hope of seeing more happiness around in habsworld = wins and fun for the game.

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:clap:

Careful tho...the Koivu fanboys will have their panties in a bunch if you say that too loudly.

Like I care. Can't blame anyone else. Look at how often this team has completely fallen apart at various times when Koivu was captain. Players have no one to look up to for guidance.

Interesting enough: when the Habs lost Koivu & Higgins they didnt miss a beat. But when Lang went down, the downward spiral started. Maybe Lang had more influence than we thought.

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Like I care. Can't blame anyone else. Look at how often this team has completely fallen apart at various times when Koivu was captain. Players have no one to look up to for guidance.

Interesting enough: when the Habs lost Koivu & Higgins they didnt miss a beat. But when Lang went down, the downward spiral started. Maybe Lang had more influence than we thought.

But how come the team was so effective last season without Lang?

I think the various situations over Koivu's tenure have varied considerably (e.g., players, management, coaches, injuries), and so I reject the idea that he is the key variable that explains everything bad that's happened from 1996 to the present. Nor do I believe that he is a bad leader. What might be true, though, is that Lang helped to shelter Koivu (and by extension the team) from Koivu's decline. It's clear that Koivu is no longer able to lead the offence, and maybe he really needed Lang to draw checkers, eat up some minutes, and otherwise take the heat off?

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But how come the team was so effective last season without Lang?

I think the various situations over Koivu's tenure have varied considerably (e.g., players, management, coaches, injuries), and so I reject the idea that he is the key variable that explains everything bad that's happened from 1996 to the present. Nor do I believe that he is a bad leader. What might be true, though, is that Lang helped to shelter Koivu (and by extension the team) from Koivu's decline. It's clear that Koivu is no longer able to lead the offence, and maybe he really needed Lang to draw checkers, eat up some minutes, and otherwise take the heat off?

Kovy was hot last year. when he wants to, he leads this room. This year he hasn't and Lang brought a degree of maturity and dare I say, fun. Koivu doesn't seem to being much other then a 2nd line centre worth of points. He is not a great leader...

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I'm quaking - we are one the league's weak sisters.

We just got thoroughly dominated by Atlanta and Islanders at home. Anyone who moans about how awful Kovalev is should watch the last few games without him.

Of that list, how many of those teams do you see us beating in our current form? I'd say maximum goalies steal three games. We'd better hope Latendresse and Kovalev come back with rage and fire. And for crissakes play Dandy on defence!

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I'm quaking - we are one the league's weak sisters.

We just got thoroughly dominated by Atlanta and Islanders at home. Anyone who moans about how awful Kovalev is should watch the last few games without him.

Of that list, how many of those teams do you see us beating in our current form? I'd say maximum goalies steal three games. We'd better hope Latendresse and Kovalev come back with rage and fire. And for crissakes play Dandy on defence!

Yes we look bad, and yes I, like most of you feel sick to my stomach. BUT, we have a better record the past ten games then everyone in the top eight except New Jersey and Pittsbuegh. Not giving us any excuses but man everyone is having a rough ride lately. Just hang on guys it might not be as bad as we think. There are problems but Gainey will fix it.

In BoB we trust?

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missing kovy is bigger than we all think apparently. I think it is obvious that guy was not the problem. Koivu is not the problem. So what are we left with? A shell shocked group that really needs someone to stand up and make it happen. Koivu can work his ass off every night and mostly he does but in this situation we NEED kovy to pick this team up by its jock strap and lead it into the playoffs. He is our star, he is the one guy who can do the impossible, Yeah I know he's gotta want to. Come on Bob get him going!

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Koivu is a good captain but a poor top centre. There's a world of difference, and it'd be best to not confuse the two. You can be a good captain without being a top line player. Dave Andreychuk was Tampa's captain in 2004, but it was Richards-St Louis-Lecavalier-Boyle-Kubina-Khabibulin that carried that team to the top. Andreychuk played a support role for the top guys, and his wealth of knowledge of the league and the grind of the NHL season were invaluable. Koivu needs to be put in a position to succeed, but he isn't right now. If Andreychuk had to be the 30-50 goal scorer he was when he was young for the Lightning, that team wouldn't have won. But failure to do so wouldn't have made Andreychuk a bad leader, just as Saku's failure to lead this team's offence doesn't make him a bad leader.

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Koivu is a good captain but a poor top centre. There's a world of difference, and it'd be best to not confuse the two. You can be a good captain without being a top line player. Dave Andreychuk was Tampa's captain in 2004, but it was Richards-St Louis-Lecavalier-Boyle-Kubina-Khabibulin that carried that team to the top. Andreychuk played a support role for the top guys, and his wealth of knowledge of the league and the grind of the NHL season were invaluable. Koivu needs to be put in a position to succeed, but he isn't right now. If Andreychuk had to be the 30-50 goal scorer he was when he was young for the Lightning, that team wouldn't have won. But failure to do so wouldn't have made Andreychuk a bad leader, just as Saku's failure to lead this team's offence doesn't make him a bad leader.

That sums up the Koivu situation as far as I'm concerned. I'd add 'necessarily' a bad leader. We don't really know, do we?

Thanks, HABBER-oooooKNOWS, for your encouraging take. I know we should hold on and give Gainey several games to instil changes in this team. Damn but it's hard to do.

I'm embarassed to admit it in a way, but after that Jersey game I've really down in the dumps (one reason why I've been surfing this board obsessively lately). It's not the loss, it's the 48 shots against, the lack of conviction, the confusion in the zone, the stupid penalties. Right now I see nothing before us but mediocrity. I believe(d?) in the rebuild. But it all seems to be coming to wreckage. Can we even say that the future looks bright? Do any of our 'young guns' really look like future stars? Will Gainey even be around next year to fix things? If he can't who can??

I can't face another decade of garbage teams and shi*ty hockey from my beloved Habs. I'm just completely bummed out.

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But how come the team was so effective last season without Lang?

Last season Kovalev and the team had something to prove. Kovy lead the way, the rest of the team followed, there was never any need to turn to Saku. It's when things turn sour that it always drags on because the players have no one to look up to and follow, there's never anyone that says "Alright, let me take care of this, it'll be alright". Never.

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Last season Kovalev and the team had something to prove. Kovy lead the way, the rest of the team followed, there was never any need to turn to Saku. It's when things turn sour that it always drags on because the players have no one to look up to and follow, there's never anyone that says "Alright, let me take care of this, it'll be alright". Never.

Usually it's a goalie for Montreal that ends up being that guy. During the Theodore era, it was either we made the playoffs because of him or didn't because of him. Then it was Huet briefly... last year was the first time it wasn't a goalie, it was Kovalev.

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Last season Kovalev and the team had something to prove. Kovy lead the way, the rest of the team followed, there was never any need to turn to Saku. It's when things turn sour that it always drags on because the players have no one to look up to and follow, there's never anyone that says "Alright, let me take care of this, it'll be alright". Never.

But see saskhabs' post. Koivu is just not good enough a player any more, if he ever was, to 'take care' of results on the ice. He is not that kind of dominating presence. But that just means he's not a great player - not that he's not a great leader.

Anyway, this argument is like the moon - it goes round and round and round.

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So how do the Habs mend their ways for the stretch? Christ it's pathetic for us older fans to just be hoping to make the playoffs. Ah, reality, thou dost bitest and bitest hard.

I'd say someone has to sit on the d, it's ridiculous. Even something like a rotational system, something has to change back there. Dandy should just be slotted into the pack, roll with it. Two of Dandy, Breeze, Schneider playing. Sit Hamrlik for a game, tell him to rest up. Sit Komi soon for a game, same thing. Jaysus but they look awful now.

Rooks don't look good at all right now, send Pacioretty down and keep Stewart in Laraque's role and D'agostini, but a limited D'agostini.

Keep A Kost away from Kovalev; give Kovalev Tanguay, around Plex. Latendresse plays with Koivu and A Kost on 2nd line. 3rd line of Lapierre, D'agostini / Kosto and Higgins looks alright. 4th line the unfortunate Metropolit plus two guys, Stewart, Kosto...

Get forwards to come back and help out on D, get into position to receive passes a bit closer to the D. First opponent entering our end with the puck or dumping it gets punished, f'ing creamed every time. On dump-ins, first opponent to reach the puck gets creamed every time. As Kozed said, what do you do on D? Hit, get the puck out. A d-man who doesn't throw one check a game minimum gets fined or something. Forwards pressure the opponents cut down shooting lanes. Less than 30 shots a game.

Ride Carey. Pray.

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But see saskhabs' post. Koivu is just not good enough a player any more, if he ever was, to 'take care' of results on the ice. He is not that kind of dominating presence. But that just means he's not a great player - not that he's not a great leader.

Anyway, this argument is like the moon - it goes round and round and round.

And yet we keep getting told what a great captain he is. I think he can be inspirational due to his personal battles, but I have to wonder about his leadership. How can we consider him a great leader when this team is constantly plagued with personnel issues, lack of effort, clics in the room, not listening to coaches, etc. I think Koivu is probably a nice guy, someone who is respected in the room, but I don't think he leads this team. I don't think he works with the coaching staff to ensure everyone gives 100%.

I just don't see any evidence other then wishful thinking to sit hear and say, despite all these issues, "it can't be Saku, he is a great leader". People have no problem with tossing Carbo because "results count", but for some reason, they defend the captain to the death.. I am sorry, but results count and Koivu has not been able to get a team pointing in the same direction in years.

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The numbers don't lie on Koivu, the least successful captain all time in habs history. Never made past the second round, made the playoffs 1 out of 3 years. Not good. I like the guy, i think he is currently way past his prime on the ice. Kovalev the same thing.

What so you mean look at thr habs trhe past 2 games without Kovalev, in case you missed it, the slump has been going on since befoire the allstar break, Kovalev played in all but 2 of those games.

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I blame all on the D and its not up to Koivu to teach the team to play D, that is the coach's job. This team has looked scary and bad on the D, not only this season but in the playoffs and last regular season as well. Some nights our Offence has been so great that it hasnt mattered that our D stinks but with the injuries this season our offence has struggled and we have had to relied alot more on the defence and as I said it stinks. Blame Koivu all you want but if the coaching change doesnt help its a new core of Dmen that we need.

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Can we please have at least 1 thread on the boards that doesn't devolve into a Koivu/leadership thread. tis getting old. Every time I think a thread may be different, within a few posts, that's what it turns into. Annoying. Mods: How 'bout you pull all of that crap out of threads and build the massive leadership thread instead? Oh wait... <_< At this point, I'd love it if Koivu left as a UFA, only because maybe then we'll have different discussions around here.

The last 13 games, I don't think it matters who the face. They crap the bed against the Isles and Thrashers, manage a strong (well 20 minutes of strong) against the Sharks... they aren't even playing up or down to their level of competition. Right now the Habs are like my golf game, if you know the saying. If they follow roughly the same winning/losing %s as they currently have for home/road (yeah, I know...random stats), they would end the season 7-5-1. 15 pts, which was the total of the 6th place team last year. of course, 95 pts were the 7-8 teams last year. Wouldn't that be fun to finish 8th, and have yet another 1st round Mtl-Bos series. Ha.

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Saku Koivu is a hockey player who happens to be captain, he does a great job representing the team and the community ... but he's not a professional motivational speaker. If the players can't look themselves in the mirror and get motivated to play hockey ( be paid for it ) and do the things they need to do to be successful, then no matter what Koivu says or does is going to change that.

If your boss came in to your office or whatever and say " boys and girls we're going to do this and be successful " " come on lets get fired up and get it done " and the first thing that comes to your mind is " I don't agree that this will make us successful " or " that sounds stupid " or " Yeah ok " then guess what ... it's going to fall apart, especially if you're a key component in the chance for it to be successful.

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Saku Koivu is a hockey player who happens to be captain, he does a great job representing the team and the community ... but he's not a professional motivational speaker. If the players can't look themselves in the mirror and get motivated to play hockey ( be paid for it ) and do the things they need to do to be successful, then no matter what Koivu says or does is going to change that.

If your boss came in to your office or whatever and say " boys and girls we're going to do this and be successful " " come on lets get fired up and get it done " and the first thing that comes to your mind is " I don't agree that this will make us successful " or " that sounds stupid " or " Yeah ok " then guess what ... it's going to fall apart, especially if you're a key component in the chance for it to be successful.

You are making a huge assumption. I tell you what, if my boss came in with a plan that I didn't like and I didn't work hard to make my team do their best, then I would be fired. It is up to the Captain (and the team in general) to give it their best shot and do what the coach asks them to do. If they don't, it doesn't matter what the coaches strategy is, they will fail.

While I am tired of Koivu's so called leadership, it isn't just him. I am sure there is a core of vets that have to go if they are going to change the mentality in the room.

I saw a great interview with Messier who said that the key in Edmonton (and the year in NY) was that despite the fact that they didn't all agree with the coaching strategy, the leadership on the team ensured that everyone pulled in the same direction and did their best to do what was asked of them. That is why he is a great leader. We need that kind of leadership on this team. If we had it, we wouldn't have all these "incidences", "clicks", and "team issues every year.

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