Game 34 : Habs @ Stars

December, December, December. 3-5-1.

Habs left Colorado, and made there way down south to the state of Texas. Tonight they face off against a surprisingly better looking Dallas Stars team. (20-10-3)

You cannot discredit the Habs for lack of effort this month. They have played well in most of their losses. The just lack some finish. Sunday night, might of been the best pressure I've seen the Habs put on another team in the 3rd period. Unfortunately we missed a half dozen empty nets. How can we improve? First off, I'd like to see more sticks on the ice. Put some power into it boys. It's great to get in front of the net, and create some traffic, but if you can't get your stick on the ice for a pass, whats the point. We have little to no production from out blue line, so good luck with deflections/ screen goals. I can't count the amount of times Darche has been in perfect position, and Pleks throws the puck right to him, and he misses it, or it goes directly through his legs. I know Darche isn't an NHL elite player, but when I played hockey growing up, the first this any coach would tell you, is keep your stick on the ice, or get out of there. Sheer frustration. But it'll come. While we are still on this subject, has anyone notices that the Habs must be the worst team of all time when playing with an extra attacker. I swear, the Habs pull their goalie and almost can never create a chance, and get scored on. And at the same time, whenever a team pulls their goalie, they seem to have a good chance of getting that goal. Anyways, a bit of a rant this morning, but still I cannot complain that much about this season. But it is the little things that are costing us games.

Dallas is going to be hard to stop tonight. The defense has a big job. Brad Richards is helping this team in a big way. Leading the team in goals and scoring, he's already got 15 goals and 23 assists in 33 GP. Keri Lehtonen is also having a great year. He's got 14 wins and a .920 Sv%.

The Habs trio of Gomez, Gionta and Pancioretty look to bring some offensive pressure. They looked great against Boston, but slipped between the pipes a bit in Colorado.

Price should get the green light tonight. Making this his 31st start of the season. Carey's numbers are still great. Sitting pretty with 18 wins, a .930 Sv% and 2.13 GAA.

Morrow will be playing the game with a face mask, after breaking his nose last week. Apart from the both teams are without injury, other that the wondered Mr. Markov.

Game starts at 9:00pm tonight and is being aired on RDS and TSN-HDHABS

Enjoy.

-Jason Pietroniro

6 Comments

George Prax's picture

I missed the game on Sunday so I can't make any comments on what happened. But overall this month is going exactly as I predicted... tough teams at home, lots of road games, it was bound to start unraveling. Now the Canadiens have to ensure they don't panic going forward. They're actually playing pretty well, and they need to keep it up... Hopefully after the holidays Gauthier will finally make a big splash with all that cap space.

Jason Pietroniro's picture

Sorry for the lack of re-reading this before posting. Lol. I seriously had about ten mins to throw it together before a meeting at work this morning. I'm not even sure the part about extra attackers makes sense. What I meant was that other teams that pull their goalie against us, always seem to tie it up. Whereas the Habs seem to either have no success at scoring, or give up the empty net goal within the first 15 seconds.

Anyways, should be a good one tonight. I love late games. Go Habs!

George Prax's picture

Weber and Kostitsyn will be healthy scratches.

Tyg's picture

Eller on the top line with Pouliot, who is queuing up to be next in the doghouse. I think AK is done is this city. Pouliot's on the bubble but still has a slim chance. Eller is a center and not likely to score off even the awesome Pleky's feeds (sorry). They're gonna drop this one tonight barring some terribly lucky bounces. By the end of this road trip, they'll be out of the Division lead, and they've already dropped to 12th in the league now. It's gonna get a whole lot uglier before PG makes a deal to shore up the back end. And even if he does that, we still lack some crunch goal scorers. I think of the teams holding down PO spots right now, we're 2nd to last in number of goals scored. Holes holes holes...

George Prax's picture

I have to admit again I missed last game but I don't see how one bad stretch means that Kostitsyn is done in Montreal... wouldn't be the first time. Plus it's not like they can do anything with him for two weeks... would be really weird timing to sit him... and he's not going to sit in the press box for 50 games.

I don't think it's time to panic really. Ya the Habs aren't doing so well this month but like I've been saying, this was nothing that shouldn't have been expected.. while people shouldn't be overly optimistic, at the same time it's not as bad as you make it sound by saying 12th place lol. It's just a long, tough road trip. Nothing to be incredibly worried about. But there are definitely holes in the line-up.

Jason Pietroniro's picture

I love you Tyg, but I see it 100% completely diff. We can't demand production or multi point nights from our top 6 game after game. AK46 is well on pace to have a career year. His effort is questionable some nights, but I'm assuming his heads in it this year. I think he lacks some confidence when he goes a few games without a point. As far as Pouliot is concerned. Name me a 3rd line center on a offensively challenged team that has as many goals as him. It's contradictory to say that Pouliot is on thin ice and they say we are of the lowest goal scoring teams in the NHL, when he's pointed as much as he has in the ice time he's seen. Call me crazy, but he's amongst our best players this season. We are not the Flyers. We are not the Pens. We are not the Canucks. We are the Habs. Under JM don't expect our best players to exceed much more that 60+ points in a season. But hey, what's wrong with that. Winning is what counts right? I'm sick and tired of hearing we're going to crumble. or players are done in this city. It's a thing of the past. Look at Washington. Would you say Ovechkin is close or on the bubble to leave Washington. 7 game road trip, around the Holidays. What do you expect. We've only lost 1 game on it. The lines are shuffled for tonights start, but I assure you, within 5 minutes they will be back to normal minus Kosty. AK46 will be back on the ice after tonight's game.