Let’s not talk about hockey tonight. Something else. Anything else. How about that other local sports team? Shit, are there any other local sports teams? Hell, let’s talk about the Alouettes if need be. Umm, I went to a Cubs game once. Can we talk about that? No?
1. I know I said it was okay to be outshot, but I meant outshot, you know, 30-20 or something, not 41-12. That’s just embarrassing. Speaking of the Cubs, you could probably take them, as-is, right this second, put them on skates, and get 12 shots on goal against the Lightning. Sure, you probably wouldn’t have gotten the goal, but, well, it didn’t really make a difference did it?
2. The CMD has officially returned. We thought they had it under control, that they’d finally found the right cocktail of antidepressants, but we were wrong. In the hour that officially comprised this game, they spent 50 minutes sitting around a musty, candlelit basement wearing purple crushed velvet and too much eyeliner, listening to old Cat Power albums and writing gothy poetry about how nobody really understands them. Perezhogin came down for about five minutes like somebody’s cheerful, blonde little brother and gave them all cupcakes and a nice goal, but they made him leave because he was ruining the mood. Then later he got smacked in the face with a puck and they all felt really bad about that, so they went out and sort of tried to play hockey for the last 10 minutes.
3. Carbonneau was choosing the offensive lines by lottery tonight- I think he put all the numbers in a hat, and every shift he’d close his eyes and grab three, and those three got to play the next one. Imagine any possible combination of Habs forwards, I guarantee you they saw at least a few minutes of ice time together tonight. The first period, it just looks like a few simple switches, second period I’m getting really confused, and by the third even the RDS announcers can’t seem to figure out the logic. It gave the game a very strange vibe throughout, and combined with the unusual late decision to play Huet in a back-to-back game, instead of Aebischer, it looks a bit like the coaching staff expected this to be a disaster ahead of time.
4. Cristobal Huet: green tea ice cream for the soul. It must pain him to make 38 saves in a game and still take a regulation loss, but his save %- under what can only be described as excruciating circumstances- remains fantastic. But now you understand why he never smiles.
5. At the commercial breaks, they show little clips of Habs players wishing everyone a Happy New Year. Latendresse: Sinister, in a just-rolled-out-of-bed kind of way. Komisarek: Charming, in a just-rolled-out-of-bed kind of way. Streit and Plekanec: Clearly not very comfortable on camera. Bouillon: Cleans up surprisingly well. Souray: Looks less anxious than he usually does in these things. Koivu: I don’t care what he’s saying, I love the sound of Finnish- so many glottal stops warm the heart. Anyway, thanks guys, I’ll try, but I think y’all are going to have a harder time working up a bonne annee than I will this year.
So the Habs more or less beat themselves while the Bolts skated circles around them giggling derisively and wondering how the hell this team is 13 points above them in the standings. 11 points now. I sort of wish I could say I was surprised, but I’m not really. This is the way their season has been, up and down like a sadistic yo-yo, and anybody who didn’t think they could lose this spectacularly hasn’t been paying attention. Still, they’ll find a way to bounce back. It’s what they do.
In other bouncing-back news, the half-hour time differential meant I caught some big chunks of the Sens-Leafs game on CBC, and many congratulations to the Senators for pulling together a very inspirational win. The downside is that I decided that Emery is too good for me to wish him ill, which means that the list of Sens players I feel comfortable making voodoo dolls out of should they start creeping up on the Canadiens is getting shorter by the day, since I’d already been given grounds to rule out Alfredsson, Spezza, Heatley, and Corvo. At this rate I’ll be left with nothing to stick pins in come playoff time except Neil.