Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Game Two: Panthers vs. Habs

So have we forgotten about Saturday night yet? I have. What's Saturday? Okay. So things were a bit erm ... sluggish? Yeah. I like that. So it doesn't count, right?

Lineup changes! Eller, who I guess was playing against the Leafs (?) ... musta blinked and missed his effort, will sit 7 storeys above the Bell Centre ice, whilst Brenden Gallagher gets his first NHL start.

And Alex is here! No "artist" goals tonight, okay? Actually no goals, period, would be even better. THANKS.

First Period:

- Richard Garneau gets a nice little tribute. Oh the many nights of my childhood during all of those glory yearsnwatching him on SRC. RIP.

- Jose Theodore doesn't get the start tonight. Might have something to do with the shelling he took last night in Ottawa.

- Eek. Prust is hurt after giving out a reasonably routine open ice hit. Might have been the hit he took along the boards seconds earlier. Shoulder?

- Meek boos for Kovalev.

- Speaking of Alex, guess who got caught up-ice on a Habs break, springing Plekanec open and a 1-0 Habs lead?

- Pleks on fire his first three shifts, nearly scores again off a tip. Gallagher jumps on the ice for his first NHL. Looks like Mike Keane, no? Anyone remember Keane?

- Habs offence plenty more jump tonight, if the first 10 minutes are any indication. Passing certainly seems to be a bit more organized.

- Bourque pushing hard for the net, draws a holding penalty. This is the kind of play that will help get Bourque redeemed in the eyes of many Habs fans.

- Nice early PP pressure, and Habs draw another. Got some 5-3 action now.

- Desharnais golden setup, can''t bury.


- P.K. totally missing out playing next to and learning how to QB a powerplay. That's Andrei Markov.

- Not sure if it's just the quality of the Floridian opposition, or lack thereof, but Habs forwards so much faster and skilled right now, it's no contest.

- Safe to say Prust injury isn't minor. He hasn't returned. Sigh.

- Panthers might go the entire period without testing Price. It's been that one-sided.

- Really don't know what was wrong with that hit by Gorges. Certainly wasn't interference as the puck was by the hit. Oh well.

- Couple of close call on the PK, but no damage done. Excellent bounce-back period for the Habs.

Second Period:

- Diaz with a lazy hold, and the Panthers go to the PP. Hate these lazy penalties.

- Habs PK also looking much sharper tonight. Again, not sure if it's because Florida's legs are slow from the road trip or ... naw, it's because the Panthers are tired.

- Habs doing their best to let the Panthers off the hook here. Desharnais with another garden variety lazy trip after coughing up the puck. Oy.

- You just saw that one coming. Game totally in hand and then - poof. It's gone.

- Habs register first shot of 2nd just past the 6:00 mark, and it's a harmless one that nearly sneaks in. Critical that the Canadiens re-establish the two goal margin quickly.

- Oh my god. Markov. Where have you been all this time with that laser shot? 3-1 Habs.

- Panthers are falling just a little too easily, if you know what I mean. But the refs are biting. Moen to the box on what was a pretty clear dive.

- Plekanec completely muffs up a clearance on the PK, but Price saves his bacon. One drink owed.

- Have a strange feeling that a few forwards will be doing their best in the 3rd to give Andrei a few chances for the hat.

- Good to see Prust out there! Bad to see him handing out a pretty flagrant slash. Panthers now 5-3 advantage, call for time.

- Big faceoff win there, kills the Moen penalty.

- Habs going to PP. All eyes on Markov.

- Fans screaming for a shot every time puck is on Markov's tape.

- Habs passing tonight has been superb. If they brought this against the Leafs, final score would have been entirely different.

- YES. Galchenyuk gets his very first. What a great moment for a kid who's got one big bright future ahead.

- Bell Centre absolutely thundering from scoring announcement. Can't even begin to imagine the thrill he's feeling this very moment.

- Safe to say Galchenyuk ain't going anywhere after his "5 game tryout."

- Did I forget to mention that Gallagher collected an assist on that goal, his first NHL point? Did anyone notice?

Third Period:

- Okay, I'm going to need some kind of an explanation why the Habs find themselves down for 5 minutes after Gorges took the brutal hit from behind into the boards. Some of the calls tonight have been somewhat off the reality mark.

- Kovalev total non-factor tonight. In its own strange way, that's a bit of a disappointment.

- This Florida PP is just atrocious. And what's this? Another *very* weak interference call, this time on Markov. Getting somewhat silly now.

- Kovalev time now?

- Remember how I just said that the Florida PP is atrocious? It's worse than that.

- Price showing a little flair on the PK, maybe a bit ticked over that Markov call. Habs escape.

- Pacioretty with tons of chances tonight, just can't quite bury it.

- Habs one more PP. Once again, all eyes on Markov for the hat. Will he? LET'S WATCH.

- Oh man, did Andrei ever wind up on the wing. Just missed far side.

- After a strong 1st and 2nd period, Bourque has returned to Earth for the 3rd.

- March to the box continues. Hasn't helped the flow much for this game, although in retrospect, it hasn't exactly been a classic tonight.

- In previous times, Therrien would have been up in arms over a few of the calls made, but tonight he's been very calm and collected. Definitely approve of this Therrien 2.0 - at least the composure part.

- When the Habs D isn't shot blocking everything coming from the point, Price has been there to save the day.

- Very impressive win tonight, although the Panthers really weren't much of an opponent. Good test coming up Thursday night in Washington, who took a really good thumping tonight at the hands of the ... Jets? You just know they're going to take it out on the Habs in less than 48 hours.

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