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Season Opener: Oct. 7, Habs vs Leafs, 7 PM


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Montreal Canadiens (0-0-0)

Projected Lineup

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Max Pacioretty - Tomas Plekanec - Brendan Gallagher
Lars Eller - Alex Galchenyuk - Alexander Semin
Tomas Fleischmann - David Desharnais - Dale Weise
Brian Flynn - Torrey Mitchell - Devante Smith-Pelly

Andrei Markov - P.K. Subban
Alexei Emelin - Jeff Petry
Nathan Beaulieu - Tom Gilbert

Carey Price
Mike Condon

Injuries: Michael Bournival, Zack Kassian (SABH)

Scratches: Paul Byron, Greg Pateryn, Jarred Tinordi

 

Toronto Maple Leafs (0-0-0)

Projected Lineup

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James van Riemsdyk - Nazem Kadri - Brad Boyes
Shawn Matthias - Tyler Bozak - Joffrey Lupul
Daniel Winnik - Nick Spaling - P-A Parenteau
Leo Komarov - Peter Holland - Mark Arcobello

Matt Hunwick - Dion Phaneuf
Jake Gardiner - Scott Harrington
Martin Marincin - Morgan Reilly

Jonathan Bernier
James Reimer

Injuries: Petter Granberg, Nathan Horton, Stephane Robidas

Scratches: Frank Corrado, Michael Grabner, Roman Polak

14-15 Leaders Montreal Toronto

Game Notes

Goals Pacioretty (37) van Riemsdyk (27) Puck Drop: 7:00 PM EST
Assists Subban (45) van Riemsdyk (29) National TV: SNET, TVA Sports
Points Pacioretty (67) van Riemsdyk (56) Regional TV: N/A
PIMS Kassian (81) Phaneuf (108) English Radio: TSN 690
+/- Pacioretty (+38) Winnik (+23) French Radio: FM 98.5
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Gut feeling says that Fleischmann-DD-Weise line might be the one that stands out the most.

Keys to victory:

Stay out of the box
60 minute effort

Keep Price's sightlines unobstructed

Avoid 3-on-3 OT (more of a crapshoot than shootout imo)

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Fawk a duck ! One of the girls we were having a dinner with tonight just called it off because of "girl's problem". We're totally watching the game !!!

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Fawk a duck ! One of the girls we were having a dinner with tonight just called it off because of "girl's problem". We're totally watching the game !!!

The hockey gods have intervened. Let's hope they are as interested in helping the Habs tonight as they were you.

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Too bad we never start the season against an actual rival, but hey - it's NHL hockey!! GO HABS GOOOO!!!

The Leafs as a team haven't been a rival in some time, but their fans certainly have been. I truly despise losing to the Leafs because I hate having to hear about it

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The Leafs as a team haven't been a rival in some time, but their fans certainly have been. I truly despise losing to the Leafs because I hate having to hear about it

Me too. But that's kinda what I always drive at when the subject of this 'rivalry' comes up. It's a completely artifical rivalry driven entirely by the Toronto-centric media and fans. If not for that fake hooplah, we'd think of the Leafs in about the same way we think of the Columbus Blue Jackets, i.e., as nearly irrelevant to anything that we do or care about.

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Nah, the Leafs have always been our number two rival. Sure, it is media-driven, but that's just the nature of sports.

One thing's for sure, I hate losing to them! Especially now that I know more Leafs fans than ever.

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Nah, the Leafs have always been our number two rival. Sure, it is media-driven, but that's just the nature of sports.

Long-term, the Leafs may be #2. I wouldn't put them there right now. I'd have Ottawa ahead of them in terms of the rivalry factor.

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Me too. But that's kinda what I always drive at when the subject of this 'rivalry' comes up. It's a completely artifical rivalry driven entirely by the Toronto-centric media and fans. If not for that fake hooplah, we'd think of the Leafs in about the same way we think of the Columbus Blue Jackets, i.e., as nearly irrelevant to anything that we do or care about.

Oh I don't know about that, I am still pissed at them for 1967. They never should have won that cup. But I understand that our younger fans don't remember the old days. But bawston and trawwna have always been our big rivals. It sure as hell isn't the blue jackets.

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The only significant thing I can think of in recent memory was when they beat us in the last game of the regular season to make us miss the playoffs. And that was like 8 years ago. I suppose it's hard to have a rivalry when one of the teams is absolute garbage for more than a decade. There's been some entertaining games though

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Past Results

2014: 4-3 Canadiens, Plekanec scoring with under a minute

2013: 4-3 Maple Leafs, blew a 2-1 lead, Parros injury

2012: 2-1 Maple Leafs, Plekanec snowed Scrivens and the crowd chanted "WE WANT PK!"

2011: 2-0 Maple Leafs, Reimer stood on his head while Price was shaky

2010: 3-2 Maple Leafs, Gionta almost tied it in the dying seconds

2009: 4-3 Canadiens, OT winner by Gorges, Price stopped 43 shots

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The only significant thing I can think of in recent memory was when they beat us in the last game of the regular season to make us miss the playoffs. And that was like 8 years ago. I suppose it's hard to have a rivalry when one of the teams is absolute garbage for more than a decade. There's been some entertaining games though

No matter how bad one or the other of the teams is they always seem to step it up when they play each other and make it a good game.

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The only significant thing I can think of in recent memory was when they beat us in the last game of the regular season to make us miss the playoffs. And that was like 8 years ago. I suppose it's hard to have a rivalry when one of the teams is absolute garbage for more than a decade. There's been some entertaining games though

The mistakes I made that night were thankfully not sexually transmitted, but they were certainly drunk regrets.

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I made a thread at least a year ago about our biggest rivalries (in people's opinions). I'm pretty sure I had Boston, Toronto, Philly and Carolina as a few of the teams I considered to be our rivals... Maybe it was over a year ago.

CC, this may be the first year that I somewhat agree that Toronto is not really a rival in a way. With that being said, it certainly depends on one's definition of rival. If I really am to think about it, I don't think there's a team I'd rather face on opening night than Toronto. Boston would set me off into a "ready to get pissed" mood whereas Toronto gets me excited for the season to start. Most of the time the games are quite close as well regardless of the standings which means it does mean something different to the players as well. I reside in California now but growing up, on a Saturday night, in my snowed in cottage, the only team I remember facing is Toronto. I doubt we played them 15-20 times a year but the Leaf games really stand out to me from Hockey Night in Canada. Perhaps, the media got to ME at a young age!

Anyway, I'm sure if I were to live in Ontario I'd feel different, but I think it's come to the point where most Leafs fans are pretty realistic about their team and are sick of their never ending rebuild. In that sense, I agree they're not really a threat to us and therefore are not a rival. If they were good though, there's not a team out there I'd like to see succeed less. I am of the younger generation when it comes to being a Habs fan and actually witnessing Cups but I think a huge part of the Boston rivalry in the present stems from the fact that they've been a good team as well. If they start sucking, like the Leafs do, the rivalry would die down in a way for me.

So for now, I'd have to agree with you in the present that Toronto isn't our biggest of rivals but only for the reasons stated. And may Babcock soon get fired and it remain that way for at least another 49 years.

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As of today, It's pretty clear to me that our rivals are :

1. Boston (even though this one is on the downslide, it remains strong)

2. Ottawa

3. Tampa Bay

4. Leafs

5. NYR I guess... thanks to Krieder.

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Past Results

2014: 4-3 Canadiens, Plekanec scoring with under a minute

2013: 4-3 Maple Leafs, blew a 2-1 lead, Parros injury

2012: 2-1 Maple Leafs, Plekanec snowed Scrivens and the crowd chanted "WE WANT PK!"

2011: 2-0 Maple Leafs, Reimer stood on his head while Price was shaky

2010: 3-2 Maple Leafs, Gionta almost tied it in the dying seconds

2009: 4-3 Canadiens, OT winner by Gorges, Price stopped 43 shots

I was at the Parros face plant game and I'll never forget the sound it made when he went down, and then the silence afterward.

I was also at the Grabovski vs Kostitsyn "fight" game. At the time many in the stands thought that Grabovski gave everyone the finger as he was leaving the ice. I don't think I ever booed so hard in my life.

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There is nothing so sweet as kicking the lafffs a$$es. Unless it is Bawston. But really we must focus. Our biggest rival? whoever the hell we are playing on that night. We have a Cup to win boys. And we will shortly begin that trip with a timely win over the hated lafffs.

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Franchise Rival: Boston

Divisional Rival: Tampa Bay

Annoying Bee: Ottawa

Ha! Not bad at all. That's definitely how I feel about Ottawa - a pain-in-the-ass cling-on of a franchise, not worthy to wipe the Habs' behinds, that beats us often enough to be aggravating. Kind of like the Hartford Whalers used to be.

The Habs' TRUE rival - and one of the greatest rivalries in all of sports - is Boston. And only the TO hype machine fails to understand this. I don't see the Habs/Leafs as a genuine or authentic rivalry because it has not been sustained by anything that is actually hockey-related since 1967. It is simply a product of a Toronto-driven nostalgic media/fan narrative that likes to play make-believe that their pathetic franchise is somehow equivalent to the infinitely greater, more successful and more relevant Montreal Canadiens. And we Habs fans dread losing to Toronto purely because such losses feed into this delusional hype-machine narrative - the lunatic self-importance of the Toronto-centric vortex - not because the games matter in hockey terms or because there is anything authentic at stake between the two teams.

You can see the artificiality of the rivalry in the way the two teams tend to actually play when they meet. The Leafs are always jacked up, super excited, playing at their absolute best; the Habs' players, while they follow the requisite media script of talking about the rivalry, etc., generally play like it's just another night at the office. Compare the intensity the Habs invariably bring to games against the Bruins. It's no contest.

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