Saturday, 1 March 2014

Game Sixty-Two: Leafs vs. Habs


- Desharnais, Pacioretty, Subban, Markov collect at centre ice and talk over this fortcoming 4-on-3 powerplay. It's kind of really significant, big extra point on the line.

- Lots of passing, great setups, but only one shot registered, and no winner scored. Bah.

- Markov clearly tripped heading to the net to take a pass to score. Refs somehow don't make the obvious call.

- Wow. Briere. Just had to shoot off that break rebound to score, and somehow ... he didn't.

- Gallagher gets a shift. Galchenyuk ... nope.

- Bernier a delay of game for that??? Wowzers.

- Broken play, Pacioretty finishes the game, wide open net. We'll take it, thank you.

Third Period:

- Habs 2nd period Fenwick holding steady at 66% (total). The Leafs continue to be as lucky as they are bad.

- Habs are going to play four games in five nights out west starting Monday. It's safe to say that each and everyone of those games is going to make tonight's game against this Leafs team seem like a vacation.

- Holy crap. What a save by Budaj on Kessle. Man. Alive. Should be tied 2-2.

- Not to take anything away from Budaj, but Kessel simply failed to raise the puck off an incredibly nifty pass by Van Riemsdyk. If he lifts it, the game is tied.

- That's a pretty awful penalty by Kadri who needlessly tripped the relatively harmless Wiese. Habs to the PP looking for some insurance comfort.

- Wiese took a skate to the face on that penalty play. I hope he's okay. Looked nasty on replay.

- Habs poweplay is either inept (dump and chase) or predictable (feed to Subban/Markov). Net result ineffectiveness.

- Oy. On the powerplay, a horrible, horrible pass by Markov to nobody at the line, giving Van Riemsdyk a break. Tie game.

- Habs ridiculously disorganized this period. And Budaj is getting blitzed.

- And there you have it. Murray caught way, way up ice, allowing Kessel to come in off the wing unmolested. This time, he raises the puck, and doesn't miss. 3-2 Leafs.

- Habs PP has been particularly inept tonight. Don't see why things should be any different at this point.

- Figures. Third time's a charm with Subban firing from the line and Bernier gets screened by Gallagher. Tie game.

- Markov commits a trip, but Van Riemsdyk is also nabbed for a dive. I do believe that's the first time an opponent player of the Habs has been called this season for that infraction.

- Habs have been passing to nobody at the line all night long. Terribly sloppy hockey.

- After his disgraceful overtime treatment two nights ago, Subban with a statement game tonight. The great players seem to do that all the time.

- Nifty carry and pass by Eller to Briere in front of Bernier. Very nearly the lead regained.

- Gallagher, will not be stopped. Just about single handedly planted the goat horns on Phaneuf.

- Habs really aren't helping their cause if this game is held to a tie. Really needed to send the Leafs out of town with zero points.

- Hoo boy. Kessel clears it over the glass. What a huge mistake. Habs will probably take a 4-on-3 advantage first 1:30 of O.T.

- Markov. One-man keystone cop routine tonight.

- So overtime. Will Therrien grab a clue and also play the guys who really ought to be played with the 4-on-4? Galchenyuk? Gallagher? Eller, even? Stay tuned.

Second Period:

- Habs 1st Period total Fenwick was 68%. Want more? Close - 90%. Not enough? Tied  - 100%.  Toronto's one goal deficit really ought be much more.

- Leafs turning the tables to start the 2nd frame. This is how you let games that you really ought to be totally dominating, slip away.

- Doug Murray with a blast from the line off the crossbar. Yes, you read that right - Doug Murray with a blast.

- He may have totally lost any ability to score, but at least Eller is playing a solid two way game. At least.

- Would it be sacrilege to observe that Doug Murray has played a pretty good game?

- Apologies for lack of comment, but this period has had so little to talk about. It's been a dump chase chip festival. Dreadful, dreadful hockey.

- That goaltending interference call on Briere was dreadful. He bumped into Bernier outside the crease. Offical miscall.

- I guess the good news from the Habs perspective is that while they were outplayed in the 2nd, they didn't surrender a tying goal. Given how dreadful Toronto has looked tonight, really shouldn't be contest.

First Period:

- Yeah, normally we'd post a few crack cocaine jokes and a stupid picture of Rob Ford for these Habs/Leafs games, but it's the weekend, and I'm lazy. Anyway, kind of an important game tonight, what with the race in the east so close. Not expecting this to be much of a game, with both clubs being terrible possession teams. We'll see.

- So one of the few Habs that's been scoring consistently of late, Daniel Briere, has been plugged down to centre the 4th line tonight, with Moen and Parros on his wing. So expect him to score exactly - nothing tonight, because of this roster move. Yeah, I don't get it either.

- Yup. It's gonna be rough and tumble tonight. That'll be fun, if not for the poor quality hockey that's to be expected.

- Craig Simpson seems to think Randy Carlyle is matching Therrien's lines. Craig, you know Montreal has last change, right?

- Dion Phaneuf with a dumb trip. At least his play has always been consistent with his hockey intelligence.

- Game very very sloppy, many whistles as a result. As noted earlier, that's to be expected when two teams that don't play the basics very well, face each other.

- Leafs taking the principles of dump and chase to another level. Zero shots registered 9 minutes in. Agonizing hockey to witness.

- Budaj ... oy ...

- When I predicted execution tonight would be poor, I didn't expect it to be THIS bad.

- Leafs are playing just ... horribly ... the Habs need to take advantage before Toronto discovers their legs and its game (however meek it might be).

- Subban remains the only Montreal defenseman remotely capable of feeding the puck to his forwards. Markov in his younger days, was a specialist, but that part of his game has largely left him. Anyway, because it's just Subban, the Habs are destined to indefinitely muck for offense.\

- Leafs had one game earlier this year where they went shotless in a period. They're now entering the danger zone of repeating that feat.

- Class One save by Bernier off a Bourque slot tip from a Gorges point shot. Should be 1-0.

- Welcome back Alex Galcheyuk, spinaround shot that Bernier probably should have had. 1-0.

- Habs kinda dominating right now, which normally would be impressive, but the Leafs .. ya  know ...

- Leafs just standing around their zone, Habs skating circles around everything, and Pacioretty with a backhander that while tough, probably also should have been stopped by Bernier. 2-0.

- Wow, shot on goal for Toronto. Emelin with an absolutely dreadful zone clearance right up the middle intercepted by Lupul, saved by the crossbar. Bad, bad, bad defense.

- Anyway, Leafs seem to be getting some sort of a semblance of a game going here, late in the first.

- Gorges with a bullet shot from the line, shockingly hard by his standards. Hits Gallagher hard, he's hurt on the bench.

- Can't blame Budaj, Van Riemsdyk with a great redeflect. The whole series began with Emelin making a wild clearance attempt from behind his net. That's two terrible plays by Emelin the past 3 minutes.

- Possession will heavily favour the Habs in the first period, they dominated first 15 minutes, Toronto did a push and scored, and will probably be extremely happy to be trailing by only one. Still, the Leafs looked awful.

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