Dennis Kane’s Excellent Montreal Canadiens Blog

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Montreal Was In A Coma Saturday Night In Toronto. And Who The Heck Is Anton Stralman? March 30, 2008

Why am I not surprised that MontreaL, leading the eastern division, waltz’s into Toronto to take on the sad-sack Leafs who won’t be in the playoffs, and comes out flatter than a pancake. Montreal had no drive, no spirit, not much of anything, as they lost 4-2 Saturday night to Toronto, and some unheard of Leaf named Anton Stralman scores two goals that Jaroslav Halak should have stopped.

I think we might see Carey Price every night from here on in.

Why am I not surprised? This kind of thing has been going on for 40 years. If Toronto played Montreal 82 times a year, they’d be the greatest hockey team in the history of hockey. In reality, of course, Toronto stinks most of the time. But certainly, on this night, Montreal did the stinking.

This is the kind of thing that really plays with my head. For example, what if Montreal loses to Ottawa on Tuesday, then again against Buffalo, then closes the season against these dreaded Leafs. It could mean they lose four straight headed into the playoffs.

It’s just my paranoia talking here. I shouldn’t be thinking like this. But I can’t help it.

And still on the subject of feeling shitty, all Habs fans are waiting to see just how hurt are Saku Koivu and Mark Streit. Both were injured blocking shots in Buffalo.

The team’s been remarkably healthy all season, and now with the playoffs arriving, possibly three key players (with Komisarek), could be on the shelf.

Again, it’s my paranoia casting its’ spell.

Montreal’s rebounded all season from losses that would keep a lesser team down. They’ve surprised everyone. This is why Guy Carbonneau should be a strong contender for Coach of the Year. So I’m gonna say right now that they’ll come out like gangbusters on Tuesday night.


13 Responses to “Montreal Was In A Coma Saturday Night In Toronto. And Who The Heck Is Anton Stralman?”

  1. Mike Williamson Says:

    Well Dennis I guess the boys decided to save energy & be part of Earth Day.I just don`t get it,over the years even when we owned the NHL in the late 70`s & 50`s they some how dragged us down to their level of play! Boy`s Earth Day is over,turn up the thermastat & turn on all the lights first place overall is still in your control !! We have three tough games ahead,thats right three Ottawa,Buffalo & the unpredictable Leafs.We need the six points so wake up guy`s.By the way I really,really hate the Leafs !!!!

  2. der Habinator Says:


    What happened last night was an instance of the same old same old. Oh yeah, the pattern is recognizable: a) Habs playing very good, if not superior, hockey, b) the`we can’t have this’ mentality kicks in chez the league `powers-that-be’, c) we gotta sell the game and we can’t do that so well if a bunch of sad-sack big-market teams keep getting beaten by that stupid Montreal team .. wherever it is, d) of course, everybody is in `denial’ re b) and c) so they can pretend to innocence, even point the finger and cry bs when legitimate protests are raised when the same old same old happens, to wit: let the refs use their discretionary powers.

    Yeah, last night was about pattern recognition which is based on what went before (the fancy term is a priori knowledge) and statistical probablilities based on a previous `training set’. So, let’s take the last three games of the Habs as our `training set’ (feel free to expand the set, that’s when the effects of non-calls really comes into play). Hmmm, balanced calls in first two periods & Habs are clobbering the Sens so we go to the third and what happens …. yup, 4 straight calls against the Habs & suddenly it’s a close game! If more had been needed to make the `other’ more `equal’ well, more woulda been forthcoming; Buffalo vs Habs: hmmm, first four penalties against the Habs …. no help for us in the third, eh?; last night, hmmm, 4 of first 5 against, guess who? And one of these bs calls was a monster non-penalty that morphed into a game misconduct.

    Like friggin’ rats in a maze we’ve been conditioned not only to accept this recurrent bs, but to reinforce it by validating it which we do when we say we played poorly. Well, it’s pretty damn hard to play `your game’ when your system and rhythm is constantly being subverted by poor calls. And, please, spare me the bs that I’m a sore loser and should stop whining – therein lies the real bs. Hey, we gotta play through it but let’s not pretend it’s something it’s not. On the flip side, we have consistently produced great teams precisely because of this bs: we have learned that we have to play way better than the other team in order to get similar results. And we have repeatedly risen to the challenge – something that this team must also learn to do and now is the time to stat learning because we can be damned sure that come the playoffs it’s gonna be more of the same old same old. It’s called character, a commodity which we have always had in abundance but which is all to frequently sadly lacking elsewhere.

  3. Dennis Says:

    My wife said last night sometime in the third period, “well, how they doing?” and I replied, “they seem to be taking a lot of borderline penalties.” So, der Habinator, your comments are very interesting. And Mike, you’re right. They need to wake up because they need those six points.
    Thanks for the comments, boys. They’re awesome.

  4. Mike Williamson Says:

    I agree with der Habinator,I mentioned after the Buffalo game we seemed to get many dubious calls against us,same thing last night. Have the powers to be decided our power play is a really big threat(24%)so let`s not give them those chances !! It`s time to let the teams decide the out come not some ref only seeing one team on the ice!!!

    ps; I did not go out to star gaze last night as i could not find my Hat !!!!!

  5. der Habinator Says:


    Read what Renney & Shanahan had to say about what penalties do to a team (re their game today against the Pens): hmm, something about sucking the life out ….

    p.s. Mike, if your wife won’t but the beer for your games, the least she can do is knit you a hat ….hehehehe.

  6. der Habinator Says:

    oops, `buy the beer’

  7. Al Says:

    Did you guys even see the goals…! You can’t blame Halak for 3 of the 4 goals… they were deflected before then went in… one of them even deflected twice. The shot from the outside from Stralman he should have had. Leafs got the bounces and the Habs didn’t show up.

  8. danielleia Says:

    Hello! I just wanted to let you know I enjoyed reading this blog. I’m a Sabres fan and I saw your link from a Montreal site. Don’t even ask why I’ve been on French sites, I don’t know myself. I can’t read French! I’m guessing I’m nervous because the Sabres are clinging on for their dear playoff lives and I must follow every team we’re up against. Maybe. Plus anything that mentions Buffalo holds my attention 😛

    Oh, and nice article on Ovie’s “girlfriend.” I suppose love happens via the interwebs, seeing as my neighbors met that way, but when you’re… Alex OvenChicken?” Hmmm.

  9. der Habinator Says:


    My mother had a saying, which she always accompanied with a sigh, a roll of her eyes and a sad shake of her head, to wit: You can’t see the forest for the trees. Now, I say this to you ….
    in a fraternal way.

  10. der Habinator Says:


    Now that Tricky Dicky is no more, it’s nice to have somebody else to `kick around’. Lawrence made a nice catnip mouse but, well, he seems to be hiding out in his hole in the wall these days. So, hehehhe, that leaves you. Hmm, come to think of it you and Lawrence would make a nice team, you’ve obviously got a lot in common: you both are fans of teams with dorky uniforms, no cups & no hope of ever winning one; you’re both cerebrally-challenged – he’s canuckleheaded & you’re buffalobrained; you’re both in luuuv – he’s got a crush on Trevor Linden & you’ve got one on Ovechkin; you both think a happy face is an `objet d’art’; you’re both made of catnip.

    Hehehehe, I’m sure DK (tolerant gentelman that he is) is happy to welcome you to the site. Who knows? Perhaps, unlike Lawrence, you can learn the error of your ways and come to embrace the CH – the symbol of the `essence’ of hockey. Remember: Il y a toujours de l’espoir!

  11. […] the checking is more intense and every mistake is magnified in importance." – Dave Shoalts Montreal Was In A Coma Saturday Night – Dennis Kane’s Canadiens Blog "Why am I not surprised that MontreaL, leading the eastern […]

  12. danielleia Says:


    Oh. Dear. God. What have I gotten myself into? No, really though, Ovie…? Ew. He’s quite ugly. He may be a crazy goal scoring beeyotch… but I certainly have NO crushes on him. He’s ugly. He’s the devil. I guess I should’ve said “ewwww” rather than “hmmmm.” HAHA!

    “There’s always hope?” I’ll pretend you meant, there’s always hope for the Sabres. Sigh.

    You probably scared Lawrence away. Now, I must leave you to cheer for Pittsburgh. I’m assuming you understand why I’m all about Pittsburgh tonight seeing our “situation.” However, knowing Chris Drury is on the ice…. and it’s playoff time… and he’s a robot… I’ll pronounce the Penguins as dead.

  13. Dennis Says:

    Can’t cheer for Pittysburgh. No way. They’re in a dogfight with Montreal. Can’t cheer for the Rangers either. Geez.
    You’re forgiven about Ovenchicken. By the way, can I use that name?

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