While the Montreal Canadiens were far from home on their recent west coast road trip, I also found myself far from home. The time difference between Vancouver and Montreal meant that this hockey trek was going to be a late one. I got off the bus and walked along the sketchy, dark streets of the St. Jacques strip. Returning to the strip felt scary, but I knew it was worth it. Even if it meant I had to watch Vancouver Canucks hockey, whose style of play I don’t usually enjoy…

There is nothing more Canadian than outdoor hockey. Most hockey players’ first hockey memory is on an outdoor rink. Skating around all day until cheeks turn red and the feeling in toes starts to fade is a Canadian tradition. The Heritage Classic had returned to Canada after much success in the United States with the New Year’s game, The Winter Classic. It was going to be a classic…

If you’re new to Montreal Canadiens hockey, now is the right time to start watching. A good chunk of the season has past and each game until the last one will always be important. All points lead to a playoff spot and every single goal matters, quite exciting. A middle of the week game can be ordinary…except when the Habs are playing their longtime rival the Boston Bruins. To all fans, we all know it’s always a great battle. To anyone new, the one thing you should know: the Habs don’t like Boston and vice versa. I wanted to go to a hockey hotspot…

Ah, Sundays in Montreal, normally a day of recovery from the night before. Sunday’s a great day to get up late, go out for all day breakfast and chill on what is seen as a rest day, unless you’re the Montreal Canadiens. Sunday was the 2nd of back to back games… in the afternoon. Not my favorite time to watch hockey, too early to drink or even think straight. However this was a tradition for this particular Sunday as the Habs always play an afternoon game before the SuperBowl game.

It was a weekend of typical winter activities. I hit up an outdoor rink after my shift ended; I hadn’t been on skates in years. In seasons past each time I would pass by an outdoor rink I would say “I’ll try to this winter.” Well, I finally did, and the ice was smooth, my skating crisp. It was merely the practice pond at Jeanne Meance park, but next to me was a game of pick up hockey.There were about 20 of them, all ages, taking turns playing shifts in possibly the longest game of the day. Stickwork chippy, rosy cheeks and second wind. Even a few girls joined into what used to be an “only boy’s” game; hockey has now become everyone’s game.

The Canadiens have now reached the halfway point of the season after a bumpy December (we must never speak of the road trip ever again). Not exactly what the Habs were hoping for. However this season has been nothing but surprises. Some good, some bad. Either way, the goal still stands: to make the playoffs. Even in January we’re thinking what may happen come April. But good news, the schedule isn’t as hectic as that road trip. The Habs did come home a little lighter: Max Lapierre got traded to the Ducks. We will see him again along with ex captain Saku Koivu when the Ducks play later this month.

I wish this road trip would end now, it’s getting painful. I returned to an annual tradition for the game against the Capitals, my lineup of ladies each holiday would meet up at Ye Olde Orchard downtown (1189, Rue de la Montagne) for the rematch. With the notion that the Washington Capitals had been waiting since the Habs eliminated them last April, and with them refining their winning ways, the Capitals were ready to take us on. Add to this that unfortunately the Habs are back to being merely ordinary, and…

The holidays can bring out the good in most of us, or sometimes the bad. As of late, the Canadiens have been playing some ugly hockey. First there was the beating in Philly, followed by a playoff style win against Boston which gave us hope for the 7 game road trip we were about to embark on.

However, two games in it hasn’t been good or bad. Just plain ugly.

The eye infection from the last entry has cleared up and these eyes have now seen a Cammalleri fight, a brilliant PK hit, and Gionta bringing the spirit

Yes, the title does tie in to what happened to my eye. I didn’t get into a bar fight but I figure a punch would be less painful. Not as painful as the back to back losses the Canadiens sustained over the weekend.
We had a win streak. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, and then sometimes you’re bound to stink it up in Leafs Nation.

I was going…

As snow kept piling on in the city, I knew that even in this bad weather I was going to watch the game VS the Senators. A friend of mine who hasn’t gone out in a while and was trying to finish a paper felt the same way too. We needed a game and an escape from the storm.
Downtown was the easiest way to beat the snow so we hit up an Irish pub, Mckibbins Irish Pub (1426 Bishop st). They also have locations on the West Island and St. Laurent Blvd but nothing beats the original.

Zzzz…did I miss the game? Zzzz…. I hate afternoon games.

I look away for a couple games and this happens: The Habs have a winning streak. Yes, it’s only two games but it had been a while. Thanks in part to Habs Express on RDS for filling in the blanks, helps a girl when all she wants to do is have fun (in the non hockey way).

But of course the funny thing was that it was bottom dwellers both East and West. New Jersey (sans Martin Brodeur)…

Another middle of the week game, another bar search. I decided to trek out of my element and go into unfamiliar territory. I knew the minute I hopped onto the crowded 90 bus, this was going to be an interesting night. I don’t know where I am, but wherever I am there is a hockey game going on. Heading west on the St Jacques strip: known for no tell motels, quick eats for truckers and the only bar in the middle of no where. I knew where I would end up, at PJ’s Pub (6910 St Jacques W), deep in the outskirts of NDG. The minute I walked in I was in shock, the interior was twice as spacious as the exterior. Appearances are deceiving. Luckily I wasn’t doing this alone, I was with a gang of friends on this hockey adventure.

Me thinks I can predict another loss this Wednesday, then a win Thursday. Or we hope in reverse. What I love about the Canadiens right now is that as a team, they are still managing to stay in the mix despite losing a top defenseman and dealing with an 8 million dollar passer. While Andrei Markov is mending and Scott Gomez is rich in assists, the Habs are still playing amazing, most of the time. What I love about the Canadiens right now is that as a team, they are still managing to stay in the mix despite losing a top defenseman and dealing with an 8 million dollar passer. While Andrei Markov is mending and Scott Gomez is rich in assists, the Habs are still playing amazing, most of the time. The negative is that there hasn’t been either a winning or losing streak as of late.