Rabid Habs

Not Ready To Go

Minnesota Wild

“We’ve got to shoot the puck more, go to the net more, be more aggressive in front of the net, be hungrier and try to get a shot on the net every chance we get because you never know if the shot will go in or not.” – Alex Galchenyuk

After a beautiful, tear filled ceremony held yesterday evening at the Bell Centre for former Montreal Canadiens defenseman, Guy Lapointe, whose #5 jersey was officially retired, the puck dropped at 7:00pm and the Habs were ready to take on the Minnesota Wild. Both back in the lineup last night were Jiri Sekac and Travis Moen, who took Michael Bournival’s place after he suffered a separated shoulder during Wednesday night’s game against the Buffalo Sabres. The Canadiens also recalled Drayson Bowman from the Hamilton Bulldogs Saturday afternoon; the 25 year old left-winger signed a one year, two-way contract with Montreal on October 3rd, and has had two goals and four assists in eleven games so far this season with the Bulldogs, but sat throughout the whole game. After breaking their three-game losing streak with a 2-1 shootout victory over the Sabres, the Canadiens had seemed eager to give the Wild all they could handle. Minnesota, like Montreal had struggled with the beginning of the season, dropping their last two outings to the Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators. It was no secret what the Montreal Canadiens needed to do in order to keep their one game winning streak; they needed to put the wild, wild Midwest to sleep.

During the scoreless first period, there were tons of pressure from the Wild who were desperate for a first goal (or any goals for that matter) and saw the Habs being…sleepy? The only player who seemed wide awake was Carey Price, who stopped a lot of rubber. Although he had been struggling for the past three games, he definitely was stepping up, but he is certainly not the one to blame for those losses.

Brendan Gallagher started off the second period with a feed off of Tomas Plekanec, setting him up with a beautiful slapshot, and giving the Montreal Canadiens their first goal of the night. From that point, the pressure was on for Minnesota until Andrei Markov’s giveaway allowed Thomas Vanek to set up Jason Pominville, leaving the game tied fourteen minutes and fifty nine seconds into the game. The tie ended quickly with Lars Eller’s wrist shot that was assisted by Brandon Prust and Jiri Sekac. The second period was left 2-1, and the Bell Centre was roaring with joy.

The third period held promise as Jiri Sekac was rewarded with his second goal of the season at four minutes and forty six seconds, of course this was after waiting on the refs to confirm the goal because of Nino Neiderreiter pushing Brandon Prust into Minnesota Wild’s net. The Montreal Canadiens were now leading 3-1. Two minutes later Max Pacioretty, assisted by P.A. Parenteau and David Desharnais scored a beautiful goal and once again, the Bell Centre lit up like a Christmas tree. Despite Minnesota’s effort’s to make up for the loss of their point leader, Zach Parise, the Wild could not catch a break and the Montreal Canadiens ended the game 4-1.

Here are my thoughts on last night’s game.

  • The Montreal Canadiens woke up from their hibernation and came back swinging, and just in time for Guy Lapointe’s jersey retirement (what a beautiful way to show your appreciation to a legend by coming back and winning a home game 4-1). The only hardships that the Canadiens seem to be facing are from Brendan Gallagher, David Desharnais, and Tomas Plekanec, who seem to be the only players on the roster who have struggled this season with scoring. Maybe they’re still stuck in hibernation mode; maybe they will wake up mid season and make huge comebacks, but right now they’re definitely not on my top picks for the Montreal Canadiens’ five pick pool.
  • If you’re still questioning whether or not the Habs made a smart decision by giving PK Subban an eight year contract, look back on how he played last night and his play during last season and this season so far. I guarantee you that you’ll change your mind.
  • Why were we benching Jiri Sekac for so long? Seriously, why?

The Montreal Canadiens play the Winnepeg Jets on November 11th at the Bell Centre at 7:30pm.

Find Jessica-Lyn on Twitter: @strucxtures