Saturday, 15 March 2014

Game Sixty Eight: Sens vs. Habs


So anything happen last night?


- No pressure on Montreal in the OT. To get just a single point out of this game is incredible. Sens are ballistic over the calls made (or not made) the final two minutes.

- Well, here we go. Hoo boy. What a night.

- Therrien plays it conservatively of course, starting out with Plekanec and Gionta. Jesus. Go for the win, I mean ... really.

- BOUILLON. Lahner can't cover the puck. THE HABS win. The Sens are going absolutely ballistic, though.

- That was one of the craziest games I've ever seen played in the Bell Centre. Right up there with the Habs 5 goal deficit comeback over the Rangers in 2008. 

- The first goal of the season by Bouillon. What a time to score it.

Third Period:

- Right off the opening faceoff Zach Smith sprung for a break, Doug Murray again the culprit out in la la land. He's a one-man wrecking crew and yet amazingly he continues to get regular shifts.

- Hemsky. All alone in the slot. Eller line caught up ice and slow to hustle back. 3-1. Terrible goal to surrender. Now the Habs are really in tough.

- Zach Smith AGAIN sprung in alone on Price who makes a sprawling save, AGAIN Murray the culprit as he's caught way up ice. This madness must stop.

- MacArthur. Complete defensive breakdown by Habs defense, as Emelin recklessly chases a hit and leaves his goaltender out to dry. Habs two worst defenseman this season, Emelin and Murray, particularly rancid tonight.

- Vanek just can't find the back of the net, even via these gift wrapped zone turnovers courtesy the Sens.

- What an end to end rush by P.K., nearly goal of the year. Draws a powerplay, although it's all too little too late.

- Lars Eller scored. For the first time in one third of a season. But it's a laregly useless goal, this game was over long ago.

- Woah. Gionta with a tip in, and it's 4-3 with two minutes left. Could this possibly happen?? Naw ...

- Can't believe the Habs might pull this out the fire. 

- Lehner looked shaky to start the game and now to end it. And wow - Habs about to get a powerplay. With 1:30 left. Turris goes for a foolish trip in offensive zone.

- Price pulled. 6-on-4 powerplay. Hang on to your hats.

- OH my god. What a finish, Desharnais puts it in the net but did it beat the buzzer???!??

- THAT IS A GOAL. With 2 tenths left on the clock. I cannot believe what I've just seen. 

- That goal happened because Subban, who might have had the powerplay shift of a lifetime, passed the puck to the wide open Desharnais, who barely .... and I mean just barely, beat the buzzer.

- That final powerplay was some of the most frantic hockey I've seen in a very long time. What a crazy game.

- Watched the replay, Gallagher with an incredible desperation dive with 7 seconds left to keep the puck in the zone. So many incredible plays to be dissected in that last remarkable 20 seconds of the 3rd.

Second Period:

-  Bogus goaltender interference call on Spezza, methinks Price might have Mike Smith suckered the refs into that call.

- Well it evens up, Eller given a silly tripping call on Karlsson, he clearly played the puck and Karlsson simply tripped over the stick himself.

- Vanek clearly very frustrated by his recent inability to finish, but he's doing all the right things. It's gonna happen.

 - Habs just plain dominating this period - this game. If they somehow can't come away with the two points, it's going to sting.

- For so many weeks Habs were riding the benefit if a PDO wave. Now nothing seems to be going in - the luck tables have steadfastly turned against.

- Doug Murray with an absoltely dreadful turnover at centre to Greening creating a breakaway. But the net appeared to come off before the puck went in. It'll be close.

- That was just a horrible turnover by Murray - how can Therrien continue to ignore this? Anyway, no goal, but Eller gets nabbed for the trip - he had to take the penalty to try to prevent the goal. 

- Doug Murray is just terrible. Just terrible. Wanted to write that for the umpteenth time.

- Brilliant pass by Karlsson to spring Zach Smith all alone. Maddeningly, the badly outplayed Sens take a 2-1 lead. 

- Price has played well, but not his usual super-sharp style we've grown so accustomed to this season. That Smith goal he hesitated between playing the shooter and making a poke check. The end result he lost all control over the puck. A weak goal, by Prices's standards.

- The Sens have been the Sens tonight - terrible turnovers in their zone, but they've been getting away with it.

- Habs owned that period - possession and scoring chances, but somehow find themselves behind. I really don't see much of an adjustment is necessary, they need to just keep doing the same as what they did the first 40 minutes, and I think they'll come out on top. We'll see.

First Period:

- T-minus 8 minutes before Carey Price makes Michel Therrien look way better than he actually is.

- Weaver in, Tinordi out. Murray in. So predictable.

- Holy crap has this city ever been anticipating Price's return. Bell Centre standing O when his name was announced.

- How long before the first fight?

- Briere. 38 seconds in, a 25 foot wrister that should have been stopped. 1-0.

- Lehner. He knows the game has started, right?

- First shot on goal by Sens courtesy a rocket by Spezza, Price with no chance. 1-1.

- Oh Briere. Not once, but twice. As golden as chances come.

- Habs PP is 0/2 but both tries it was rockin'.

- Big time penalty problems for Sens as Hemsky barrels into Price

- Vanek looks great out there - him scoring is enevitable. Positioning all the right places, has come very close more than a couple of times tonight.

- Eller just holding the stick so tight, but he's battling, and this kid line has looked like it hand missed a beat. Very promising.

- Doug Murray bear Lehner clean with a simple wrist shot, but hits the crossbar.

- Vanek way way way more dangerous with Desharnais than Plekanec, miles more dangerous.

- very fast period, Habs with plenty of jump and dominated possession and the bulk of scoring chances. Really little reason to complain.


Yeah, he's back. And so are we. Kind of. Sort of. Not really. Live blogging the first period and then I (sadly) must depart for the evening. So sad.

Anyway, you've probably heard the lowdown. Reuniting the Kid line, a move surely born of desperation to get Lars Eller to display something resembling a pulse. ANYTHING, at this point. Also, Vanek no longer with Plekanec and Gionta, a move born out of growing concern than Vanek is kind of busting the joint in his failure to deposit a single black puck inbetween two posts.

That's all fine, but it still isn't removing this team from the insane path currently taken by its coach, who for some reason that is way beyond any ability to comprehend, refuses to see the obvious awfulness that is Doug Murray, opting instead to bring in the almost-as-awful Frankie Bouillon, which has only compounded the Habs blue line woes - the absence of Price surely gave Habs fans a pretty good indication of how bad our defense is with sub-par goaltending.

BUT ... Price is back tonight, and he will, I'm sure, do his usual job of making his team, and in particular, his coach look WAY better than they acutually are.

Plus we get to see Chris Neil!! What incredibly stupid thing will he do tonight?!?

Stay tuned.

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