Post Game Carolina Hurricanes Into A Game Day New York Islanders
Carolina Hurricanes 0 - Montreal Canadiens 4
Throughout the season each team circles certain games on the schedule as rivalry tilts or games that have special meaning. On the other hand there are the games that have no extra motivation other than the points. Well the game last night was just that.
Over the past few years, playing the Carolina Hurricanes has become that. I would rank a game against the Hurricanes in Montreal the hardest ticket to sell. And then add the fact that the Habs have to fly out to Long Island to play the back end of two games in two nights, a lackluster performance would have not been faulted. But the team showed the opposite.
The Montreal Canadiens easily played their best game of the season totally dominating the Hurricanes. With five minutes left in the second period, Carey Price had only faced seven shots. The entire team stepped up in light of all the injuries on the backend. The fans left the Bell Centre satisfied and that hasn’t happened too many times this year.
Josh Gorges and P.K. Subban anchored a defensive core that included Yannick Weber, Raphael Diaz, Alexei Emelin and Frederick St. Denis. St. Denis -- who is St. Denis you ask? Well it has taken him four years playing in Hamilton to get into his first NHL game, and he didn’t disappoint. Actually, none of the young guys did. That especially includes Emelin, who with his increased ice time, showed why the team was so high on him. He showed flashes of his intensity and has hopefully solidified his position on the team.
Goals came from Travis Moen, Weber, Michael Cammalleri and Subban, who finally notched his first of the season. Carey Price had a relatively easy night. Erik Cole was flying around. Scott Gomez played third or fourth line minutes which is just fine with everyone except that his salary might be the highest for someone who is now going to play less than fifteen minutes a night.
The Hurricanes are in disarray. They are not getting any leadership from Eric Staal or newly signed Tomas Kaberle. They are missing the veteran presence of Erik Cole and Ray Whitney. Jeff Skinner is in a slump and after him there isn’t very much else. The most exciting piece of news that has come out of Carolina has been the talk of the shot by Eric Staal on his brother Marc Staal when team played the Rangers. Marc has concussion like symptoms. The Hurricanes have been playing like they all have concussion like symptoms.
Long Island, New York
The New York Islanders seem like they are stuck in an eternal rebuilding mode. They sit 29th in the league. Two issues dominate the news on Long Island: a new arena and whether the team will be in Long Island much longer. Fortunately they are owned by the deep pocketed owner Charles Wang, and whatever he wants he usually gets.
Carey Price will get some rest as Peter Budaj gets the start. The Habs will ice the same lineup as they can use another game to see if the youth on the D-core will step up again. It’s one thing to play good one night, but being consistent, especially playing back to back nights with a flight in between is the real question. The Habs need all the points they can get right now, as the conference begins to split between the haves and the have nots. They are stuck right in the middle, and late November /early December is where teams make their move.
The Islanders are relatively injury free. One time rookie sensation Kyle Okposo will be a healthy scratch for the second night joining Mark Eaton in the press box. Evgeni Nabokov has played well and the team and general manager Garth Snow will send him out again using another game to showcase his talents for potential suitors.
The Habs injury list is too long to mention but in many ways it has given the organization to figure out how good their youth is. So far the players who have been given the chance have not disappointed.
The line of David Desharnais, Max Pacioretty and Erik Cole has been stellar. Brian Gionta has continued to work hard but just isn’t getting any breaks. For the Islanders John Tavares and Michael Grabner have both picked up where they left last season. I just wonder how long both will be on the Island.
The game will be on RDS and broadcast on TSN990 in Montreal at 7 pm EST.
Shahab Khan the Schoolboy