Thursday, 24 March 2016

Game 75: Habs vs. Wings


- Uh, mad scramble in front of the Wings net, puck enters the net, and for reasons that are totally baffling, Plekanec is penalized for a cross check he never actually made. So ... no goal because Habs did ??

- Pacioretty blatantly hooked on a breakaway. the other official, Brad Watson, does not make the obvious call. So, yeah.

- Horrible officiating aside, Habs taking a very physical, grinding tact so far in the period. It's resulted in some terrible flow, but it has generated a few turnovers near the Wings blue line and in the neutral zone. Habs with lion's share of scoring chances so far, even if their puck possession is low.

- Even with the departure of Mike Babcock, Wings still play a very structured, disciplined game - even with a diminished roster. Real tribute to an organization that values the merits of smart coaching.

- Habs defence attempts to chip the puck up the boards, leads to turnover, leads to goal. For the 934,0348343.94@*&*@(!!&!*  time this year. 1-0 Wings.

- Habs with not a terrible period, but still totally unstructured and disorganized, when compared to their opponent. Shame they had an obvious goal taken away because of officiating incompetence, shame they gave away a goal because of continuing defensive incompetence.


- Habs and Wings through 20 minutes, Canadiens SA CF (5v5) under 40%, which is pretty bad.

- Smith with blindside hit on Matteau at centre ice, and for reasons that are totally baffling, Matteau is  called for roughing? Incredible.

- Wings score 12 seconds apart, Scrivens is whatever on the 3rd goal. Detroit's second goal abysmal zone coverage by the Desharnais line (SHOCKING!). Game is now pretty much toast.

- Suffice to say the Hanley/Dietz pairing is having an extraordinary evening - extraordinary bad, that is. So many misplays, blown coverages. Both are doing themselves little favour for consideration next season.

- Therrien deploying Mike Brown ALL OVER THE PLACE. On the 1st line with Galchenyuk and Pacioretty, on the 3rd line with Lessio and McCarron, I have no idea what he's trying to do - but the scoreboard results speak for themselves.

- Wings now more or less setting up camp in the Habs zone at will. This game could really, really get ugly.

- Yeah, this game is ugly. So very, very ugly. Habs are getting destroyed this period, the 3rd and 4th lines are total catastrophes, about the only bright spot for the Habs is Max Pacioretty. Otherwise, it's just an embarrassment.

- Hoo boy, Scrivens. Makes a save off the Richard's original shot, and just sits on his pads, totally and utterly unaware he's given up the puck. Martha there for a very easy goal, the first of his NHL career. 4-0. So, so, so embarrassing.

- Yet another low for an organization that seemingly can never touch bottom. Detroit absolutely routing the Habs from just about every possible angle in the 2nd period, this is turning into another night of total shame for a team that probably couldn't compete for a playoff spot in the AHL. Difficult to describe how awful this Montreal Canadiens team is. Actually, it's impossible.


- 2nd period stats. Read 'em and weep. Oh yeah - Desharnis' CF (5v5) tonight? 8.3%. Once again. Eight point three per cent.

- Plekanec, who hasn't scored in more than a month, is gifted a goal by Mrazek, who by all means, should be coasting to a shutout tonight. Oh well.

- Whoops. Mrazek muffs it up again, misplaying a very routine wrist shot from the point from Dietz, and Byron slides a big juicy rebound home to make it 4-2. Still a ton of time left, more than 15 minutes. So don't go away just yet.

- Habs more or less casting caution to the wind, just tossing everything forward on the forecheck. So far they've scored 2, the Wings 0 ... so ... hey?

- Um, wow? Pacioretty takes cross ice pass on a hop from Galchenyuk, and fires it at traffic in front of Mrazek, and somehow, it goes in. Oh wait ... the Wings are saying Mrazak was interfered with. Don't think they have much of a hope.

- Goal stands. It's 4-3. With an amazing 12 minutes still left to play in the period.

- I suppose Habs were due some kind of crazy run of goals all at once - heavens knows it hasn't happened in memory. If Detroit somehow manages to lose this game, it'll be totally devastating to their playoff hopes.

- Mike Brown out for the night, lower body injury. Add 'em to the list.

- Desharnais line is an offensive-challenged wasteland tonight. Best to just shove him in a sock drawer, and walk away.

- Therrien deploying Emelin with the net empty, in the final minute. Um kay.

- Habs come up a goal short, but we'll give 'em credit for at least making the game interesting. Nonetheless, little seems to have changed with this organization. Desharnais put back into the lineup, placed at centre, lays an egg of a game, and gets lots of ice time. Garbage in, garbage results out.


8 to go. And then the off season, and hopes renewed that this organization can make some moves that will move the team in the right direction. 8 to go.

One of the moves yours truly was hoping might become reality, would be bold-ish ridding of David Desharnais, who is just finishing up year 2 of a foolish 4 year contract extension. The hope rested in the Canadiens brass buying out the remaining time on that Desharnais contract on June 30th - his injury last month a gift from the hockey gods, in that it gave the Habs an option to bubble wrap DD right through to the end of the season.

Whelp. This morning, we had his:

And so DD, once again at centre, once again displacing other players who should be playing centre over to the wing, once again because the head coach once again insists on pushing square pegs into round holes, take on the Detroit Red Wings, in Michigan.

Who wins, who loses, we care not. Which is not what could be said about the Wings, who are fighting for their playoff qualifying lives, in danger of missing the dance for the first time in 27 years.

So Detroit will be coming out hard tonight. It could be another ugly game.

Puck drops at 7:40 EST. We'll be watching and blogging and bemoaning and wanting this whole season just to be done and over with as quickly as possible.

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