Dennis Kane’s Excellent Montreal Canadiens Blog

Changing Daily, And Full of Stuff You May Or May Not Remember

New Site May 25, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Dennis @ 10:47 am

Hi. I’ve moved over to my new site. Please have a look. It’s just like the old one with some new features. I’m at  dennis-kane.com

Thanks.

Dennis

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Rodney Helps Me Out In Dealing With Those Flyers Fans May 1, 2008

Man, those Flyers fans are a tough crowd. They’re letting me have it in the comments section. So I’ve done what I had to do. I’ve prayed to the man above to help, to give me guidance, to make me strong against these folk in Pennsylvania who are rubbing their hands in glee at this very moment at the thought of their team taking out my team.

Dear Rodney, please help.

“Don’t worry, Dennis. They come from a bad neighbourhood. I put my hand in some cement there and felt another hand.”

Flyers fans drink too much. When they give a urine sample, there’s olives in it.

Flyers fans take viagra and prune juice. They don’t know whether they’re coming or going.

They asked Flyers fans to be poster boys – for birth control.

Martin Biron’s mother had morning sickness after he was born.

The Flyers complained to their psychiatrist that everyone hates them. He said they were being ridiculous – everyone hasn’t met them yet.

When Daniel Briere was a kid his parents moved a lot. But he always found them.

When Derian Hatcher was born, the doctor slapped his mother.

STOP THAT, RODNEY.

Sorry, Flyers fans.

In all seriousness, what I’ve garnered from the comments this past week from Flyers fans is this:

They don’t feel their team is getting enough respect. They’re complaining that when I write about Montreal losing, it’s not because the Flyers played well, it’s because the Habs played poorly.

And they don’t think I’m giving enough credit to Martin Biron.

So I’ve been thinking about this. And really, the big reason Philly is doing so well is because of Martin Biron. It’s not because the Flyers are on fire. Daniel Biron’s been good but not great, and also RJ Umberger. But Mike Richards hasn’t, or most of the Flyers forwards, for that matter. And whatever John Stevens did to make his defence so tight around their net, it’s really working.

The reason I say Montreal is not playing up to their standards is because they’re not. They won the eastern division, they scored more goals during the regular season than any other team in the league. And their power play was the best in the league. They played fire wagon hockey all year, they were dynamic, fast, and were a handful for others teams on most nights.

But not now.

During these playoffs, their power play has fizzled and their scoring in general is way off, and that includes the Boston series also. The guys who lit it up during the season, the Kostitsyn’s, Higgins, Kovalev, Plekanec, are quiet now.

So Montreal isn’t playing up to scratch, and Philadelphia is riding with a red-hot goaltender. (And don’t forget, Flyers fans, there’s been a lot of goal posts hit.)

I don’t know why these fans have a problem with this thinking.

And one last little thing. After Philadelphia scored late a couple of games ago, Flyers defenceman Kimmo Timonen turned around and laughed in Tom Kostopoulos’ face. This is the kind of thing that turns off most hockey fans. It lacked class, you don’t see this type of mocking often, and when Kostopoulos smacked him in the mouth for this, I’m sure hockey fans, even Habs haters, nodded their heads approvingly.

 

 

Philadelphia Steals Game Three. Carey Price Struggles And Provides Serious Drama For Game Four April 28, 2008

 GAME 3

Kate Smith singing God Bless America didn’t win the game for the Philadelphia Flyers. She hasn’t since 1975. No one on the Flyers won the game for the Flyers.

Montreal won the game for the Flyers.

The Habs were ineffective during an early-game two man advantage. They held a big edge in play in the first period. They hit three posts. Carey Price, looking shaky, was replaced by Jaroslav Halak in the third, and the team responded by outshooting Philly 16-2. But it wasn’t enough, losing in the end 3-2, and the team is now down two games to one. They need game four so badly, there’d better be focus, concentration, commitment, no late-night dinners, no over-doing the beer or wine, and a good, reasonable curfew these next two nights.

They couldn’t score. Mind you, they got two on the power play when slow-poke Derian Hatcher took a five minute major in the third. And they stormed the Flyers net for most of the third. But they had gotten behind early in the game, and it was too much to come back when Biron is playing like he is. 

And most disturbing of all, Carey Price, for far too many games now, has been only pretty good at best. Not great. Not Ken Dryden, or Terry Sawchuk, or Roger Crozier, or Jacques Plante. He’s just been Carey Price, which, in this playoff year, has not been outstanding. It’s a concern because we need Price to be the second coming of Plante and Dryden, and no one less.

So the question is. Can Carey Price make his name this year in the Stanley Cup playoffs, or are these chapters yet to written?

Game four is Wednesday night, and will the questions be answered. Is the power play back? Will the Kostitsyn’s play better. Where is Mike Komisarek? Will Martin Biron look human? And will Carey Price rebound and deliver? 

Game note:

Kudos to Robert over at Eyes on The Prize. Robert has a fantastic Habs site which he continues to tweak, and the photo of him sitting at the Habs press conference table is brilliant. (You can click on Eyes on the Prize over in my blogroll).

 

 

 

A 1930’s Love Story. Plus, The Flyers Even The Series, And Montreal Will Now Win In Five Games Instead Of Four. April 26, 2008

GAME 2

Sometime in 1933, when times were hard and prohibition was in full swing, Foster Hewitt and Francis the Talking Mule, while on a secret rendezvous in Newfoundland, and in a fit of flaming passion, conceived a love child, a bouncing baby boy.

They named him Bob…… Bob Cole.

Anyway.

Game two served notice that this is going to be a chippy series. Philadelphia may have won the game 4-2 and evened the series, but this thing’s bound to get ugly before Montreal eliminates the bad guys. Fred Shero’s shadow remains cast over the Flyers even in this day and age.

Montreal had their chances, to be sure. They could have won this game by three or four goals. Christopher Higgins hit the post late in the game. Almost everyone came close at one time or another. But Flyers goaltender Martin Biron was good, Carey Price not quite so good, and Mike Richards and Derian Hatcher are a couple of pricks.

That’s my summary.

Don Cherry said afterwards that Montreal played dopey in both games. What am I missing? I keep hearing how lousy they’re playing, but they outshot the Flyers, had breakaways, hit posts, created tons of chances, more scoring chances than Philadelphia, and although they lost, I didn’t think they looked that bad. Not bad at all.

But why do I keep thinking I must be watching a different game than everybody else? All I’ve heard, from Foster Hewitt’s love child, to Cherry, to Greg Millen, to newspaper writers and TV people, is how poorly the Habs are playing. 

I don’t see it. Of course they can play better, but they’re not flat like they were in the Boston series. Far from it. Montreal’s playing well enough to win this series, that’s for sure.

And global warming’s going to get a lot warmer when all these media Hab-haters’ asses are burning.  

Game note:

For those of you who aren’t sure who Bob Cole is, he’s the CBC play-by-play guy, and the illegitimate son of Francis the talking mule. 

 

 

Bring On The Broad Street Broads April 23, 2008

Daniel Briere didn’t want the pressure that goes with being a Montreal Canadien, so he signed with the Philadelphia Flyers instead. This young French Canadian star would have been a huge hero in Quebec. He would have been a star in the kingdome of hockey, Montreal. If he had a great seven years or so with the Habs, he’d be treated as royalty there for the rest of his life.

But Briere wanted no part of this.

I don’t think he has the balls to be a star in Montreal.

Now he has to play the Habs in round 1. Then, when the series ends, he can crawl back into obscurity.

I watched the Flyers play four times against Montreal this year, and also in game seven against the Capitals, and I don’t see much. Mike Richards needs to be stopped. Steve Downie’s going to take a lot of penalties and has a brief history of cheap shots. Defenceman Derian Hatcher has been around since the 1970’s, hasn’t he?  He’s slow. I can see Kovalev and the Kostitsyns’s burning him on a regular basis. Briere’s their leading point getter with 10 points so far in the playoffs. He’s a slippery bugger, but he’s small, and the Habs need to quickly make him inconsequential.

Montreal just needs to remember what they did in game seven against the Bruins. Attack instead of being attacked. I think it’s simple.  

Game note:

Game one begins Thursday night 

 

 

 

Did Ryan O’Byrne Just Make The Biggest Mistake Of His Life? February 11, 2008

I woke up this morning to see this.  I’m not going to really have my say until more details are provided. For now, here’s the initial report.

  Pat Hickey ,  The Gazette

Published: Monday, February 11, 2008

Canadiens defenceman Ryan O’Byrne and forward Tom Kostopoulos spent last night in a holding cell in the Tampa jail after they were arrested outside a South Tampa night club early this morning.

O’Byrne was charged with grand theft, while Kostopoulos was charged with resisting an officer without violence.

Both were freed shortly before 9 this morning after posting bail. O’Byrne’s bail was set at $2,000, while Kostopoulos has to pay $500.

They were arrested around 3 a.m. outside Whiskey Park, a popular watering hole in South Tampa. The incident started when a woman set her purse on the counter top, according to the police report. She noticed it was missing and allerted the bouncers. They saw O’Byrne outside with the woman’s purse in one hand and her cellphone in the other.

Canadiens' Ryan O'Byrne.

Canadiens’ Ryan O’Byrne.

Bruce Bennett, Getty Images
O’Byrne told police it was his girlfriend’s purse, but police determined it was the woman’s, according to the report. He was detained and placed in the back of a police car. According to police, $20 was missing from the woman’s purse. O’Byrne is making $590,000 at the NHL level this season.

According to the report: “Several associates, who were identified as National Hockey League players/members, crowded around the officers and the police car. They were told numerous times to get away from the car and not to interfere.”

Kostopoulos was arrested when he refused to obey the police order.

The Canadiens declined to comment on the situation until after a 4 p.m. practice.

 

Sean Avery and Ryan Hollweg Play For The Rangers. This Is Good News For Everybody Else. February 4, 2008

Yes, it’s not good that Montreal blew a 3-0 lead to the Rangers and lost 5-3. Yes indeed, it’s not good. It would have kept the ball rolling and brought the team to within 1 point of Ottawa with the Senators in town for a big game on Tuesday. But these things happen from time to time. I just hope it was a major lesson learned, that it takes all three periods to win.

Damn, I’m mature.

The only good to come out of this horrid loss, though, was seeing how Ryan Hollweg operates.

Ryan Holliweg is a borderline Rangers thug with a lofty 2 goals and 1 assist in 53 games. He’s just what the doctor ordered for Montreal if the boys meet the Rangers in the playoffs. Hollweg is the kind of hothead who will hurt his team by taking goon-like penalties, as he showed when he rammed Sergei Kostitsyn into the boards after Alex Kovalev had given him a sweetheart of an elbow.

You just knew it was coming by seeing him on the bench, sitting and stewing and thinking how pissed off he was and how he was going to do something about it. It’s just lucky that Kostitsyn wasn’t hurt.

And lucky for whoever meets the Rangers in the playoffs, if they make it, because it ‘s good strategy to take advantage of a jerk like him and get the Rangers a man short.   (note: Hollweg is the guy Chris Simon whacked in the face with his stick and got 25 games for it. In case you’re interested.)

And then there’s Sean Avery, a smiling, cocky mountain of mediocrity, (4 goals, 11 assists), who pulled down Sergei Kostitsyn which led to a penalty shot, which led to a goal.  (note: Avery’s a guy who dates Hollywood starlets from time to time but they keep dumping him.)

Wow, the Rangers have both of these nuts on the team. It’s great news for all playoff-bound teams in the east.