Friday, March 30, 2007

3-30-07: Senators 5, Canadiens 2

All good things must come to an end, but I was hoping that the Canadiens winning streak wouldn’t come to an end quite so soon or quite so decisively. Not that it was the worst game they’ve ever played, but it doesn’t matter: a loss is a loss is a loss, and this is no time for any variety of losing.

1. When did the Sens learn how to trap? Probably around the time the entire League realized that the Canadiens couldn’t beat even a half-assed trap if their entire chance of making the postseason depended on it. As, for example, it did tonight.

2. Congratulations to Souray on tying a fairly obscure record- most season power play goals by a defenseman (18). 4 games remaining, I hope he beats it- it’d be nice for something marginally memorable to come out of this season. However, he is immediately punished for his little achievement by Heatley, who resents anybody prettier than him setting any sort of record and therefore splits open both of Shelly’s lips with his stick- them there’s some uncomfortable-looking stitches.

3. Now, normally, that would have been a bad move, being as how normally the Habs have a pretty terrific power play, and normally a 4 minute minor would be pretty much a guaranteed goal for them. But, unfortunately, the Habs picked tonight to have their power play not just suck, but XXX deep-throat suck. In addition to thoroughly squandering Heatley’s penalty, they also managed to have a 2-man advantage for a full two minutes and yet not score. Generally speaking, it’s a safe bet that a team who can’t get a goal with those kind of advantages is not going to win the game.

4. Not really a great game for any of the Habs, although Halak actually did quite well given the quality of the chances against him- only one of the 4 he let in was a ‘bad goal’. He’ll probably get the start tomorrow, since (contrary to early reports) Huet is not in fact ready to go yet, and Aebi is... well, the bad goal that Halak gave up actually rather reminded me of Aebi. Anyway, gold stars to Markov (always wonderful), Bonk & Johnson (couldn’t ever ask for a better shut-down duo, if only we could clone them), Lapierre (well on his way to forming a ‘special’ relationship with Emery), and the Higgins-Plekanec-Kostitsyn line (off the scoresheet, but consistent offensive pressure and not bad defensively). Negatives: the ‘1st’ line- Koivu a minus 4 on the evening, and Ryder making so many terrible decisions you’d think he left his brain at home.

5. NHL players really are just like you and me- I saw Higgins at McDonald’s yesterday morning. Apparently even with millions of dollars and compelling reasons to watch what you eat, the siren song of the Sausage McMuffin is just too much for any mortal man to resist.

Sabres tomorrow, fresh off a very emphatic crushing of the DiPietro-deprived Isles. (Hey, remember when everyone was talking about how the Islanders made such fantastic decisions at the trade deadline? It’s a funny world, hockey is.) If the seeding remains as-is, the Canadiens and the Sabres will be seeing each other in the first round of the playoffs, which might give Buffalo that extra bit of motivation to try to send a message in a game that really means very little to them at this point in the season. It’s not beyond hope for the Habs to bounce back and win, they’ve played the Sabres well in the past. But another winning streak, 4 games, this Saturday to the next? I don’t know. I want to believe, but I just don’t know. It’s a tough run, for such a morphing shifting sort of team, and although the Habs still sit in 8th, they couldn't afford to drop any games- not even this one. Every point necessary, no such thing as a bearable loss, blah blah blah.

Har koja hastand, bashand.


Robert L said...

Does that "XXX deep throat suck" on the PP qualify as a swallow, spit, or choke?

E said...

oh robert, anyone who sucks hard enough at hockey eventually chokes.