Thursday, 9 April 2015

Game Eighty: Habs vs Panthers


- Officials, who weren't calling anything in the 2nd, now calling a bunch in the 3rd. 

- Habs powerplay first unit looks good, but Gilbert and DSP on the second unit look, well, pretty horrible. 

- Hate playing frustrated teams with nothing to lose. When not running Price, Panthers are hacking at every opportunity. Getting out of Florida with limited injuries will be a victory, although Pacioretty's status looks rather serious. 

- Easy win tonight for the Habs, not entirely unexpected. But the price could be steep, with Max Paciorerty leaving the game early from injury. Parenteau looked good (again). DSP actually scored, Price his usual excellent self, as was Subban. None of it, however, matters, if Paciorertty is gone for an extended period of time.


- Jokinen with a dangerous blind trip on Galchenyuk near the bands. Panthers a pretty reckless bunch tonight. But seriously, these terrible trips are the result of a team that's being badly outskated.

- Petry has wonderful command at the line on the powerplay, my only beef is his shot. He tries too hard on making perfect shots at small open targets, instead of putting the puck on net. He doesn't have the shot speed to beat most goaltenders, but rebounds are always a possibility. 

- Subban takes a puck to the face. Looks nasty. Habs need to get the hell out of here.

- Because this Habs team refuses to actually, you know, pass or skate the puck out of their zone, Weise gets nailed for a delay of game after flipping the puck into the stands.

- And right off the bat, Ekblad with a rifle shot to tie the game. Figures.

- Subban with a perfect cross ice pass to Gallagher to reestablished the one goal lead. Terrible breakdown by the Panthers defense that was totally AWOL. 

- Game opening up quite a bit here, 7 minutes into the 2nd. Not exactly the kind of game you want to play as the road team.

- Oy, Parenteau of all players, with and end-to-end goal, Florida's "defense" basically acting as gatekeepers as he skates straight through, Ellis surrendering a terrible rebound off the intial shot, Parenteau all day to flip the puck home. As sloppy a goal as you'll ever see. 3-1.

- Kopecky with a clear attempt to hit Price, invading the crease and taking Price's helmet off. Not punished by the officials. What will it take for this League to seriously protect its goaltenders?

- Barkov line vs. Habs 4th is as pretty lopsided a matchup as you can find. Torrey Mitchell is especially slow - it still baffles me what Bergevin saw in Mitchell as a 4th line upgrade. I see only downsides from every possible angle.

- Parenteau, who's been excellent tonight, does the hard work and feeds Smith-Pelly in front of Ellis.  DSP, believe it or not, scores a goal. His first as a Hab. I guess this means the Sekac deal isn't a total disaster? 

- Habs continue to dominate, even sans Pacioretty. Florida no match for Montreal, or for that matter, not for any other hockey team tonight. Their season over, the Panthers are going through the motions and basically handing Montreal two points. 


- So the Habs have pretty much owned the Panthers this year. Unlike other teams that can't win regularly, like Arizòna, Edmonton and Buffalo.

- Decent enough start for the Habs, Florida's weak defense having trouble handling speed of Habs top two lines.

- Oh boy, Pacioretty tripped from behind and hits the boards, not sure if it's his arm or head that was hurt.

- Plekanec scores his 200th of his career, Weakish goal from almost behind the Florida net. Small compensation though, if Pacioretty is the price paid.

- Habs shutting down their zone, Florida's efforts look pretty meek. Mathematically eliminated, this Panthers team looks pretty apathetic and dispirited. 

- Mainly Habs first, Florida hitting one post off their powerplay, but otherwise had virtually no real scoring attempts. There's no good reason why the Habs shouldn't coast to the finish line against the Panthers - based on how lame an effort the home team has put forward so far.

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