Rabid Habs

Texas Flood

Dallas Stars

“How would you like a job where, every time you make a mistake, a big red light goes on and 18,000 people boo?” – Jacques Plante

The Montreal Canadiens were doing exactly what they should have been doing the past few games, which is giving attention to the small stuff. Despite their 4-3 loss against the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday, the Canadiens got the puck out of their zone, had less turnovers than expected, put tons of traffic in front of the net, and also dominated and killed every power play they encountered. Those were the Habs we truly knew last night, the ones that didn’t give up when they didn’t score on opposite net first. With this mindset and determination, the Montreal Canadiens could win almost every game that comes in their path, but, last night they were facing the Dallas Stars, which had its pros and cons. The Stars have been slow so far this season, which was a giant change from the team who had a promising 2013-14 campaign and off season and have had a league-worst 3.58 goals per game. However, the Stars were coming off of a 5-2 loss from Thursday to the Detroit Red Wings, and any hockey fan knows that when a team has had too many losses, they start to get fed up and fight back. Another issue for the Canadiens is that their defensive center, Lars Eller, was out with an upper-body injury from Friday’s game against the Blackhawks and had brought in Sven Andrighetto from the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs. The key element for the Montreal Canadiens to dominate the Dallas Stars would be play the exact same way they played against the Blackhawks. They would need to keep paying attention to the little things they’ve missed over the past few games so they could get back into first place (in the NHL overall) and bring the heat to cause the American Airlines Center a little Texas flood. It would require hard work, but the Habs weren’t giving up yet.

Despite the Canadiens working hard to keep the puck in the Stars’ zone, Cody Eakin (assisted by Tyler Seguin and Alex Goligoski) was able to slip the puck past Carey Price during the Stars’ power play 8 minutes and 37 seconds in. The Habs still didn’t give up hope, but a messy line change during the last 15 minutes prevented any puck grabs, and the Stars led the first period 1-0 until the clock ran out.

 Tyler Seguin was the second period hero as he scored twice (once at eight seconds and assisted by Jamie Benn, and again at 16 minutes and 51 seconds and assisted by Jamie Benn and Trevor Daley), bringing the Stars’ score up to 3, leaving the Habs scoreless until the end of the period.

Two minutes and 21 seconds into the third and Montreal Canadiens newcomer Sven Andrighetto, who was assisted by Tomas Plekanec and Jiri Sekac, got not only the first Habs goal of the night but got his first NHL during his first NHL game with the Canadiens. Hope rose from the Habs fans in the stands and the ones at home as there was a slight chance that the Canadiens could possibly catch up to the Stars. Unfortunately, that hope was lost when Ryan Garbutt scored on an empty net with only one minute and 44 seconds left. The Stars dominated the game and the Montreal Canadiens faced yet another loss in the final game of their four-game road trip.

Here are my thoughts on last night’s game.

  • Sven freaking Andrighetto with that beautiful shot past Kari Lehtonen – let’s talk about how rare it is to see the new guy not only get the first goal of the night, but his first goal in the NHL on his first night playing with the Canadiens?! This guy isn’t human, he can’t be human. Have you seen that shot? Let us look:

  • Now, now Habs fans, calm down. I understand your frustration, believe me. It’s rough seeing your favourite team go through a weird dry streak that makes you want to rip out your hair and scream, but it’s not the end of the world. Here’s why everything will be okay: 1) The Dallas Stars have been doing terrible, absolutely terrible, so it’s obvious that they practised their ass off in order to finally get a win. The Montreal Canadiens are a team that always comes out looking beautiful, Dallas is not, so letting the Stars take the cake isn’t such a bad thing. 2) It is a well known and weird fact that if the Canadiens score first, they win the rest of the game (sort of the same deal with the Toronto Maple Leafs). Is that a bad thing? Yes and no. Yes, because it gives them that boost of confidence to keep up the good play. No, because regardless of scoring first or not, they should have enough confidence coursing through their veins to win a game or two. With that being said, there’s no need to whine and cry over this loss. If anything, this loss will only make them play better on Tuesday, and everybody knows the Habs play better at home than on the road.
  • Separating Pacioretty from Desharnais is the best break up since the break up of Motley Crue (no offence to Crue fans). Sad? Yes. Long lasting sadness? Hell, no.

The Montreal Canadiens have landed back in Montreal land to get ready for their game against the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday at 7:30pm at the Bell Centre.

Follow Jessica-Lyn on Twitter: @strucxtures