Archive for the ‘Toronto Maple Leafs’ Tag
Leafs 3 – 0 Habs
That game was as ugly as an Ed Hardy shirt.
(By the way, as a French, I want to apologize for Christian Audigier. We’re sorry for what he did to fashion in particular and good taste in general. But we’re thankful he left France long ago)
- Oh look at this Komi, it’s awful!
- What?… Ugh!
The Habs and the Leafs are behind the Islanders.
… but I feel bad for Vesa Toskala.
There, I said it.
Wow, 3 posts in 3 days. Craziness.
Ok, to begin, just a little wooooooo for the first win of the season. I only watched the first two periods yesterday, so I’m not overly enthusiastic. Let’s face it: if the Leafs had better forwards, Montreal would have lost this game. 46 shots to 27? Ouch! I think the main conclusion that can be drawn from yesterday’s game is that there is a loooot of work ahead for the habs. It’s not really a surprise, and frankly, I’m not really expecting them to start the season with a huge series of wins. I think it’ll take time for them to get used to each other. Yesterday we saw that they don’t always know where their teammates are on the ice, which led to missed passes and turnovers. But once again, that’s ok, and I’m not too worried about that, because they have lots of time to work on this.
So it wasn’t a blowout, but there were good things about the game nevertheless:
- Obviously, beating the Leafs at the ACC is pretty much the best way to start a season.
- The guys I liked the best: Price, Moen, Metropolit, and Gorges.
Those 4 played a very good game. Of course, Price deserves a lot of credit for his performance. It’s way too soon to say if it’s a good omen of things to come, but it’s nice to see him confident and efficient. Travis Moen definitely made his presence felt yesterday, with 2 fights and a goal. He was pretty close to the famed Gordie Howe hat trick… Moen was true to his reputation yesterday: he played hard, and did not hesitate to defend himself or his teammates.
And then, two of my favorite habs, Metro and Gorges, each got a goal and an assist. WOOOOO! Those two probably won’t get many accolades this season, because they’re not flashy. But it’s nice to see them on the scoresheet and under the spotlights for once. Metropolit is almost never talked about in the media covering the habs, but I think he’s an important part of the team. He’s a good penalty killer, and I’m sure he’s a respected presence in the dressing room. And Gorges… Well I’ve already said many times that he’s probably my favorite hab (especially now that Koivu is gone). So it’s really nice to see that he collects honors this morning: he was named first star of the game on nhl.com, and first star of the night overall (all games included) on Puck Daddy. Well done Josh!
Habs scoring leader this morning: Gorges.
- Team toughness. From what I saw, I don’t think the habs were really outmuscled. They did not refuse to fight when they were challenged, and they certainly did not look ridiculous. Much had been said about the habs lack of size, and the risk to see them crushed by the big and tough Leafs. I don’t think it was that obvious yesterday. Of course, it was just one game, so it’s too early to completely dissmiss the thought that the habs are too small. But it’s a good sign.
- Komi had a bad night. 15 minutes in the penalty box, and half the habs goals scored on PPs caused by him. This pleases me, and probably 99% of habs fans. But to get over with this, I’m going to say that frankly I find it a little ridiculous when some habs fans now call him a defensive liability, and pretend that the Leafs got screwed when he signed with them. Honestly, when he plays like he did 2 years ago, he’s a hell of a defenseman. I’m pissed at him for picking the leafs too, but I’m not blind: he did not suddenly turn into a bad defenseman the moment he signed in Toronto. He’s going to get booed like hell when he’s back at the bell centre, and that’s fine, but let’s not pretend he’s an awful player now, because this is just ridiculous.
- Gionta scored. The Ookies (from Interchangeable Parts) who watched him every night since he began his career, think he’s much more likely to score 20 goals this season than 48. But there’s a tiny hope in my heart that he will benefit from playing for a different team, and score around 30 goals a year. The Ookies are crushing those silly notions every time I bring this up in the comments of their blog, but still, I hope. Come on Gio!
- and finally, the best thing: the offseason is over! For real! :P I was completely giddy last night when the game was about to start. It felt great!
Now back on the bus. Next stop, Buffalo!
(Pic: Cool Bus at MIR, mise en ligne par mtoleric)
Woohoo, it’s day 1 of the 2009-10 season! Finally!
So, with a new season comes a new feature for the blog. This season, we have hired a famous singer to introduce you every habs matchup, thanks to her amazing wardrobe. Go ahead, Shania!
Oooh yeah, a big Leafs/Habs game! Thank you Shania, that was awesome. (By the way, when I say “every” habs matchup, that’s supposed to mean “every habs matchup that I’ll bother making a preview of”)
What a way to start the season… An opportunity to spoil the Leafs home opener! Youpi! Of course, this is going to be a special game, for many reasons, that are very well known: It’s the start of the season for both teams; the Leafs are a big and tough team whereas the habs are (supposedly) small, soft and fast; it’s the first occasion we’ll have to get a taste of the new habs for a real game; and finally of course, there’s this whole Komisarek affair.
Frankly, I hope the habs don’t focus on him too much. I expect him to be pretty fired up and to deliver a few bone crushing hits, to the delight of Toronto’s fans. Fair enough. Now unless he really plays dirty (and I don’t really think that’s what he usually does), there’s no reason to call for Laraque or someone else to kick his butt. The habs would be smart not to target him. There’s no need to take stupid penalties just to send a message to a former teammate. He’s not much of an offensive threat anyway.
Other than that, I’m glad that the new habs already got a little taste of the mess they’ve stepped into yesterday, thanks to Sergei and the media. Sergei, you’re a dumb fuck. Seriously. You have a chance to play in a hockey mad city, for one of the most storied franchise in the nhl, which happens to be the place where your own brother plays. You even have a chance to be his linemate soon. And you ask for a trade because you are sent to the AHL? Do I need to remind you you’ve been drafted in the 7th round, and you’ve only played 38 AHL games so far? It’s pretty extraordinary you even got the chance to play in the nhl already… You have talent, that’s for sure. But that’s not nearly enough to be successful.
I sure hope someone talks to him soon. I don’t know, just tell him the nightlife is less exciting in Columbus or Phoenix, maybe that’ll make him think a little.
And about the media: why are we supposed to be surprised/worried because the habs will start the season without a captain? Koivu is gone, as are half the players from last year. Of course it’ll take some time for new leaders to emerge. What’s the point of rushing to settle on someone, only to realize there’s someone else better suited for the job in 3 months?
Wooo! The season has not even started and I’m already all cranky! :D
So, the habs start their season tonight with a big 5 games roadtrip accross Canada. Be careful NHL, here come the new habs!
(I think Paul Mara is going to be in all of my photoshops from now on. I love his picture)
Bad break (and awful camera work by TSN)
And a little bit of both… (This would have been really funny, if it hadn’t happened at the worst possible moment of the game)
And that’s a 3-2 loss in Buffalo.
Now, the Maple Leafs will visit Montreal tonight. It would be pretty smart to win that one. Because right after this, it’s a six-game, two-week road trip that will send the Habs to Calgary, Edmonton, Colorado, Vancouver, Washington and Pittsburgh. Is it necessary to remind you that the Canadiens have lost their 5 last road games? Uh oh…
Today, eveybody seems to be waiting for the announced fight between Sergei Kostitsyn and Grabovski. I’m certainly not looking forward to this. For obscure reasons, the two players are enemies since the beginning of the season. But this is reportedly a personal feud, that has nothing to do with the game. To me, this is just a distraction, and the team doesn’t need this right now. I hope the Habs will be able to focus on their game, rather than on this nonsense. Last time the Habs focused on getting revenge on a player, it didn’t end well. It was back in november, against Boston, and everyone was waiting to see Laraque kill Lucic. The fight didn’t happen, Lucic scored a goal, and the Bruins won the game.
Laraque made his return yesterday. I hope he’ll play, since his presence could deter Brad May from being too dirty this time.
I’m REALLY hoping for a 60 minutes effort and a win tonight. Anything else would seriously disappoint me.
I love this pic
It’s more than time to post my little recap of last night’s game.
Boy, that was exciting! Well, I suppose it wasn’t that exciting if you’re a leafs fan of course, but that’s life… A fast paced game, lots of goals (and most of them scored by the good guys), a crazy building, and plenty of tension on the ice.
What I liked:
- 1 goal by Kovy, who is playing better and better
- 1 goal by Lapierre, who had a great month of december, and who seems to stay hot in 2009
- 1 goal by Kostitsyn (both of them actually, but I was thinking about Andrei). Andrei is back to his pooint per game production of last year, and it’s one of the best things that could happen to the habs.
- 1 goal by Pacioretty, who’s having the same kind of nhl career start than D’Agostini.
- A good game by Halak. That’s two in two nights, after a pretty rough week. Good for him.
- The amazing defensive play of White and then Schenn, who both desperately stopped the puck as it was about to cross the goal line, on the same action. Just look at the picture:
Ian White’s mustache makes this pic absolutely stunning
What I didn’t like:
What I’m not sure I liked or disliked:
Sure, it’s pleasant to see a game whith a few scrums, and a bit of tension. Especially if the public is really into it, as was the case last night. But at the same time, it went a bit out of control in the second period, when every whistle was followed by a scrum and a few vigorous facewashs. Brad May, who played his first game with his new team, was particularly aggressive for the Leafs. On the Habs side, Sergei Kost did nothing to cool things down. The presence of Grabovski did not really help, as there’s now clearly some bad blood between the Belarussians. Also, the Leafs were still angry at Kostopoulos because of his hit on Van Ryn back in November. So of course, the scrums turned into fisticuffs. Kostopoulos and Bouillon were successively beaten up by Mayers and May. And in the third, Grabovski lost his mind for a few seconds when he was prevented by a linesman to fight with Sergei Kost. He shoved the referee and waved at the crowd on his way to the locker room. He got a 3 games suspension because of this today.
Well, I think all of this was pretty unnecessary. It’s good that the Habs were not intimidated by those tactics, even without Laraque. I wish Big George had been there to meet Brad May though. After the game, according to the Toronto Star, May said the fights were “great,” and when a reporter referred to them as ugly, he said, “When it’s ugly it’s great.” Nice quote.
As for Grabovski, I’m disappointed by the whole situation. He didn’t play a lot in Montreal, and made the stupid mistake of missing a team flight during a road trip, because he was not satisfied by the way he was being used. Then, and probably as a result of this, he was traded to the leafs after last season. I liked him as a prospect, and I was sad to see him go. But it was the best thing for him, and he is having a good season with the Leafs. But it seems that the public won’t forgive him anything soon in Montreal. He was booed relentlessly yesterday. And his feud with Sergei Kostitsyn escalated to this stupid gesture in the third period. Honestly, I don’t think what he did was that big of a deal. Of course, you should never touch a referee, but it’s not like he punched him or something. Anyway, Grabovski still has a lot to learn I guess. He could be a better player if he just got rid of those things. I kow i’m in the minority here, but I still somehow like him.
To finish this post on a lighter note, I just want to pay a little tribute to our favourite little Greek (I know he’s Canadian, but still), Tom Kostopoulos, who once again showed he’s a poor fighter, but a great teammate…
Oh Dalida… ces yeux…
Ouais, on est des vrais gagnants!
Comme vous pouvez le voir sur cette image prise à la dérobée dans le vestiaire des Leafs, attention, ils sont super motivés. Et c’est bien normal. Car ce soir, c’est le grand classique. LA rivalité historique. Les feuilles d’érable contre les habitants. Montréal-Toronto.
Enfin! J’ai l’impression que les habs n’avaient pas joué Toronto depuis six mois… Bon, ces temps-ci, Toronto, c’est plus exactement ce que c’était. Alors forcément, ça rejaillit un peu sur l’intensité de la rivalité. Les matchs ont moins d’enjeu direct, hormis la fierté, et pour certains, la rivalité la plus chaude est en ce moment celle qui oppose les Canadiens aux Bruins. Mais même si elle a connu des périodes plus fastes, et plus excitantes, l’opposition entre Montréal et Toronto, ça reste spécial. Ne serait-ce que pour les fans, et pour l’Histoire.
Personnellement, j’ai toujours eu un peu de mal à détester avec passion les rivaux traditionnels du Canadien. Je ne suis pas un fan des Glorieux depuis ma plus tendre enfance, et j’ai un peu du mal à haïr une autre équipe juste parceque-je-sais-qu’il-faut-que-je-le-fasse-sinon-je-ne-suis-pas-un-vrai-fan-digne-de-ce-nom. Quand j’ai choisi mon équipe, j’ai adoré me plonger dans son histoire. J’ai lu tout ce que j’ai pu sur le passé du Tricolore. Et évidemment, j’ai lu beaucoup sur ses rivalités avec Toronto et Boston. Mais ça ne suffit pas pour vraiment haïr une équipe. Pourtant, vraiment, j’avais plein de bonne volonté, je ne demandais que ça moi, d’être un bon petit partisan, et de mépriser les ennemis de mon équipe… Le problème, c’est aussi sans doute que je ne fréquente pas de fans des Leafs horripilants. Dans mon cercle d’amis, une seule personne s’intéresse au hockey. C’est un de mes meilleurs amis, et il est fan des Leafs. Hélas, il est loin d’être assez désagréable pour que je déteste son équipe…
Mais bien heureusement, les Leafs se sont avérés largement assez détestables eux mêmes pour m’aider à devenir un vrai partisan comme il faut du Canadien. Je veux remercier ici Darcy Tucker, Tie Domi, pour leur excellent travail, qui a fait de moi le fan de Montréal que je suis. Mais bien entendu, je dois également rendre hommage à l’inimitable Don Cherry (ou, puisque j’écris en français aujourd’hui, Donald Cerise), qui, s’il ne fait pas partie de l’organisation de Toronto, fait chaque semaine tout son possible pour la rendre insupportable.
Merci de m’avoir ouvert les yeux, Don.
Grâce à ces trois personnages, mais aussi grâce au souvenir de la dernière rencontre de la saison 2006-07, ce soir donc, je regarderai (enfin façon de parler, il y a de fortes chances que j’aille me coucher avant la fin) le match sans états d’âme, comme un vrai fan des Canadiens. En détestant les Leafs.
Go Habs go.