Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sleeping with the enemy.....

Well sort of. Last night in the spirit of the season, (and a little bit of boredom) I decided to try something different, experiment a little and broaden my hockey horizons. I signed on to the Pens live chat room, introduced myself as “a Habs fan that loved the Habs but was less than enamored with some of their fans.” The chat room occupants thought that was “pretty cool and awesome”. They welcomed me with open arms, it was a very intimate affair and quite honestly ten men is more than enough for a lone chick to handle in an evening.

I have things in common with Pens fans, we both hate the Bruins, loathe the dreaded Flyers & we all love Kovy. They love the nicknames “big tits, lil tits, AK27 and zombie pleks. They were happy that Sid the kid finally potted one (he’s been in a scoring slump) and I was even happier when AK46 got a hattie. We chatted about Price, in their opinion he cost us the Flyers’ series, I had to concur and I also commented on how he’ll really need to steal a few games for us if we want to have a successful run come playoff time. (Later on they were quick to point out that he was off to a good start, he stole one for us tonight).

We chatted about Sid the kid, I would love to see him wearing the “CH” one day, he became a Habs fan at the tender age of six, he watched them hoist the cup in ’93 and worshipped Patrick Roy growing up.

A fun time was had by all and the win was the cherry on the cake for me. Of course I didn’t lord it over them and advised them all to be patient, the best hockey starts now. We all agreed it would be “awesome” to meet in the Eastern Conference finals this year after doing away with the Bruins and Flyers.

So what started out as a one-night stand turned into a very enjoyable evening and I’ve been asked out on a second date. So a big hello to my new buds, redrum69, redrum71, pittfan and sid_lover, we’ll meet again on Feb 3!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Anything but predictable.....

You can call the Habs a lot of things (and I have) but predictable isn’t one of them. At the beginning of the season who would have predicted:

Lapierre, Begin and Greek Lightning becoming in many ways the number one line. I’ve nicknamed them the “EB’s” (energizer bunnies); they just keep going and going and going. Lapierre is really coming along nicely and Begin is definitely a keeper.

Brisboises' on ice performance is better than last year. He has really gone beyond the call of duty and on some nights been the steadiest player out there. He’s also been contributing offensively, which has been a Godsend with the team in a worrisome scoring drought throughout the first 30 games.

Pleks is our Spezza, and I ‘m saying that not out of any disrespect for his talent, but when the going gets tough, Pleks is gone. He doesn’t get involved in any physical play, in other words, he doesn’t like getting hit. Even Kovy and the brothers K can bring a little grit when needed, I’ve have yet to see that from Pleks and that won’t bode well for him come playoff time. Here’s a little tip Pleks, get your hands on some nasty pills and see how that works for ya.

Komi got off to a shaky start, and in some games had more giveaways than an infomercial. I think having the “spa” break did him a world of good. He’s refocused, driven and he brings confidence and leadership to the team. A picture is worth a thousand words, and I vividly remember a photo of him comforting Price after we fell to the Flyers in the playoffs. He will be the next captain.

Kovalev going 20 games without a goal, oh the horror! I was so stressed out, having dreams about it, waking up in the middle of the night wondering if he would ever score again, I can’t even imagine how he felt. Saks injury came at the right time (if there ever is a right time), don’t misunderstand me, I love Saks and I can die happy once he skates around the rink with number 25, but if that’s what it took to get Kovy going, then it’s just what the doctor ordered. Wearing the “C’ brings him a heightened sense of responsibility and commitment to the team. Maybe a solution would be to have “C1 and C2” logos made, I think Saks would be fine with that. he never struck me as someone who needs recognition as the team’s Captain, he’s quietly confident in himself and leads naturally by example. Wearing the “C’ seems to bring out the best in Kovy, he needs the recognition much like he thrives off of the cheers from adoring fans, one feeds off the other. Rumor has it there are already construction plans being drawn up to add a solarium to the dressing room…. hmmmm.

Wee Dags scoring 5 goals, what a great start, SK being sent to his room with a time out, Carbo’s honing his babysitting skills.

All in all I’m happy with my team so far, and I really feel they can go all the way exactly as they are. I was recently reading an interview with Elmer Lach, his two favorite players are Saks and Komi. He also thinks this team can win, but cautions that the coach is the key, by setting the pace and being able to adapt to whatever comes their way. Well, there you have it boys, listen to the coach, number 25 depends on it. Oh and by the way, Elmer, I’m glad you agree with me, you’re one smart cookie!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

On Alex Kovalev.....

For the most part, Alex Kovalev led this team to first place in the Eastern Conference last season. He was our most prolific goal scorer and quickly became a fan favorite, entertaining us with his dazzling skill set. I was expecting great things from him this year, but we’re 26 games into the season and so far our boy hasn’t given us much to cheer about.

I do however have empathy for the guy, with only a handful of goals and this being a contract year, I’m certain he feels an enormous amount of pressure to perform as good if not better than last year.

Saku Koivu carried this team for eleven years and finally last season had a decent supporting cast around him to share the load, with Kovalev playing the biggest role.

With the additions of Alex Tanguay and Robert Lang, it gives Kovalev a bit of breathing space and he is still contributing to the team in a positive way with leadership and some brilliant playmaking. I don’t want to see him traded, I believe he still has the passion and wants to retire as a Hab. But what will it take to get our boy back on track?

To quote Winston Churchill on Russia,

A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma…but perhaps there is a key…. that key is Russian National interest.

Bob, offer him a new contract.