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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Habs/Oilers Post game October 22nd 2013

For the Canadiens; Pacioretty, Prust, Parros, Briere.
For the Oilers; Hall, Gagner, Smyth, Joennsu.

These are not the pre-season lineups made in order to rest some of their roster players, this is the list of players who are out with injuries suffered during this young season.

In the second meeting between the 2 clubs, the Canadiens came out strong in the first period scoring a couple of late goals but didn't sustain that momentum for the rest of the game. They blew a 2 goal lead and were unable to mount a comeback in late the going, eventually ending in a score of 4-3 favoring the visitors.

The story of the night was the play of Carey Price. This season his game as been above par and he has been a major reason the Canadiens are able to sustain the edge in the games they play. Tonight was not the case. He got beat by a weak goal to open up the scoring for the Oilers by Ales Hemsky. The move he pulled with his hands to get to the high slot was a nice piece of work and Price did manage to get in front of the shot but it still slipped by him. Not long after that the Oilers tied up the game with goal from Ladislav Smid that got put in because of a lack of rebound control that laid up right on the defencemen's stick.

It was in the third period that the Habs lost the game, not only did they fall behind 2 goals, but seemed as though they had a little less in the tank. The Oilers are trying to prove they aren't in the free fall that many of the media are speculating. Despite their injuries they received scoring from unlikely sources. Jeff Petry, who was beautifully set up by Nugent-Hopkins, scored during a 4 on 4. Hopkins had quite the game and finished with 2 assists. The eventual game winner was scored by Ryan Jones, his goal was started off by a bad turnover at center-ice from Ryan White, he gain the zone and gave it to David Perron who took a weak shot that Price could not control, Jones crashed the night and pushed it in.

It was definitely not the best performance Price strung together. However, it is only expected that for some parts of an 82 game season, your starter puts up a bad game every now and again. When this happens it should be up to the team to ahead of him to compensate and up their game, unfortunately, save for a few, tonight was not that night.

For the Canadiens, the scoring opened up on the powerplay. Right off the face-off, the puck went back to Markov. Markov started a give and go with Bournival, who has a 3 game point streak, meanwhile Plekanec quietly made his way to the far side of the ice. The veteran blue-liner, Markov, was able to find Plekanec by himself and laser a pass his way. Pleks made no mistake as he finished the job ripping one by Dubnyk.

The second goal came from Brendan Gallagher, who wasted no time giving the Habs a 2 goal lead. Moments after the first goal he beautifully anticipated a breakout pass by Ryan Jones. Gaining control of the puck he came in with speed towards the net andeventually scoring one top corner far side.

The last goal came in the final seconds, when teams down a pair play for the pride of the crest on their jerseys. Gionta was parked it in front of the net, and Plekanec was able to feed him a pass he simply needed to redirect to claim one for the stats column.

Subban played his usual brand of hockey, some wonder if that means Olympic caliber, I believe that should be a no-brainer. In the third period this was highlighted by a series of quick dangles in the Oilers zone that left the fans in attendance breathless. Although the play he made to the side of the night didn't end up in the net. It is in these awe-inspiring moments that prove to the Habs nation he is currently the best player in the lineup.

Making another appearance as the 6th D was Nathan Beaulieu in place of Jared Tinordi. He logged 11:26 and was not noticeable on the ice, but for a young defenceman that means he did not make glaring mistakes. Both Tinordi and Beaulieu have shown some poise when being called upon and are a making the injuries to the blue-line less of a concern
for the Canadiens.

Congratulations go out to Michael Bournival. The 21 year old Bournival was told Tuesday to find an apartment in the city, indicating he will be with the team all season. The youngster has made the most from the opportunities by the club. While this is in large part thanks to injuries to the forward group, his game has adjusted rather quickly to the NHL level. Managing to find his way onto the score sheet in the last few games and being a versatile slot into many lines he gave coach Therrien enough reason to justify his being with the big club for the remainder of the year.

The game as a whole was in no way indicative of how the Canadiens have played thus far in the season. Looking back, with both of the Sharks and Ducks coming into town, it would have been a wise decision to give Price the night off and let Budaj take on an injured Oilers lineup. The team is still adjusting to more injuries, and feeling out some kinks early-on. The quick starts at home for the Habs are a good sign that the team does wake up to play for the home crowd, a necessity in the back end of the season. The only adjustment that needs to be made and has been apparent in the last few games is keeping that momentum throughout the final 2 periods of play.

Photograph by: Richard Wolowicz, Getty Images


2 comments:

Without Prust, the Habs lack leadership on the physical department. He is a true warrior that will sacrifice his body for the team and is tough enough to protect his teammates when needed.

Prust is really a leader in every sense of the word.

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