A week ago, there was hope that the Montreal Canadiens looked confident on their road to the playoffs after an eight goal night. Three games later, the team and their fans were begging for a goal. With six games left in the season, confidence is the other thing we’re begging for, and of course a goal. I stayed in the confines of my home for the Washington Capitals game to avoid what happened when watching the Boston Bruins. Never again I want to watch a game like that, never again.
I witnessed the Boston Blowout at Brasserie Le Courtier (362 Sainte-Catherine Street) dubbed as the most intense game this season. It was the first meeting since the Max Pacioretty incident. The NHL would be watching this game carefully as they knew that the rivalry was beyond heated, incident avoided. The Habs knew what was at stake: to play smart, get the two points and win it for their fallen teammate. Well, that was the game plan we thought they could follow.
Brasserie Le Courtier is in the heart of the Place Des Arts (known as the Quartier des Spectacles). The bar had a Quebecois vibe which means Laurentide beer in tall bottles and Eric Lapointe on the juke box. They do have food, decent nachos but are known for their spaghetti and steak plates (served in large portions). Definitely hockey-friendly however the bar connects into the Belgo gallery building. Hockey and art can go hand and hand as the bar was covered in an animal and fantasy motif.
Usually when I walk into the bar, the Habs score. It wasn’t a good sign when I did that and Boston scored in the first few seconds of the first period. Myself and the small crowd knew that the Habs/Bruins series had been building up in fights, hits and sheer hate. However the only fight occurred when Defenseman Paul Mara duked it out against Gregory Campbell in the second period. The rest was all Boston scoring into the Habs net.
Carey Price was having an OK night but it wasn’t OK knowing that he can’t always be the savior each game. Yes, there have been missing players (mostly all defensemen) but “please show up for the only guy that has kept the team in contention all season.” There have been whispers of Player of the Year and goalie honors for Price, however after five goals, it made sense to send in backup Alex Auld. Why humiliate the goalie when the rest of the team are doing it to themselves. Man, did he looked pissed. This was he same face that Boston goalie Tim Thomas made earlier this year when we did the same to him. He is also the talk of best goalie.
After seven goals (there was an unofficial eigth goal in the last second of the game) I said “I never want to see that again.” So much for winning it for Pacioretty. To make things worse, Zdeno Chara had 3 assists. It was a lifeless game, everyone has lost their touch at the worst time. There are two weeks left and it’s starting to look like the Habs will play Boston in the playoffs. What a way to spark up the rivalry.
It remained the same against Washington, 2-0. It was a sea of boos in the Bell Centre with everyone calling out players. Why can’t Scott Gomez score when we’re paying him so much? Mike Cammalleri hasn’t scored in many games, no Captain Gionta on the highlight reel. PK Subban, Ryan White…quiet right now after the hat trick frenzy. This type of slump happened to Washington earlier in the season but now they’re fighting to finish first and this was with superstars. It wasn’t pretty but they did it.
Coach Martin held a practice Sunday on what was supposed to be a day off. Players skating hard and doing drills in hope that the message of production can be drilled into their heads. It must have felt like this. Or maybe words like what Coach Boudreau of the Capitals said would help to address the players.
Bar Le Courtier was a decent place to watch, however I hate to waste a bar on such a bad game. Will this be the trend by the time the playoffs start? The last time the Habs have been shut out this bad was in 1949, I just hope history doesn’t repeat and finally SCORE A F**KING GOAL!!!
Shout out of the week: The photographers of the Montreal Canadiens who were able to take the team photo. Shout out to the photographers who worked hard to create the image. As a photographer, I know it’s a lot of work that goes a long way.
Shout out to this past weekend’s Juno Cup in Toronto. It’s musicians VS exNHLers playing for musical charity during Juno awards weekend. Hooray for Jim Cuddy passing the puck.
* photos by Cindy Lopez