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Mtl vs TB : Stanley Cup Finals Series Thread


Your prediction  

29 members have voted

  1. 1. Who wins the Cup?



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2 hours ago, maas_art said:

Honestly Gallagher looks like a shell of himself. This is not a criticism of him - you saw last night he'll do ANYTHING to try to win but his hand injury is severely limiting his effectiveness in all 3 zones.  Id consider sitting him & putting Evans in his spot  (Lehkohen - Danault - Evans should have some jump)  although at this point it would be tough to break up some of the chemistry we already have.  We could dress Tatar and go back to the Tatar - Danault - Gallagher line so we could reunite Byron - Evans - Lehkonen but that mans Staal and/or Perry come out and I dont see the coaches doing that.

Really interested to see how the coaches adapt.  TB cheats a LOT and if we can figure out a way to exploit this we should be able to generate a ton of odd man rushes.  

Sit Gallagher, dress Armia

Toffoli - Suzuki - Caufield

Byron - JK - Anderson

Lehkonen - Danault - Evans

Armia - Staal - Perry

 

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43 minutes ago, habby67 said:

Unless there is a significant push back in Game 2 I would suggest we re vote lol

Im pretty sure they will come back hard.  Hopefully we get the bounces though. Would suck to outplay them & still lose.  

6 minutes ago, Regis22 said:

Not even open for discussion

Yeah, i definitely think he's struggling out there in terms of effectiveness, but Gallagher is the heart of this team, I cant see them not playing him. 

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50 minutes ago, Larry-Launstein-Jr said:

Isn't Armia in COVID-19 protocol?

 

43 minutes ago, Larry-Launstein-Jr said:

Thats old news.  He was cleared yesterday morning & they flew him to Tampa on a private jet by himself. He took the warmup skate but was scratched before the game.

Speculation is that he has a cold or something (so Covid protocol because of symptoms) but should probably (hopefully) play tomorrow. 

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37 minutes ago, H_T_L said:

Habs have made a request to have 50% capacity for remaining home playoff games. If approved that would mean 10500 fans.

Who has that control,,,,,,,,,,,, Legault? 

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On 6/29/2021 at 11:45 AM, Regis22 said:

Someone on tv mentioned Montreal has won 1 of the last 15 ( now 16 ) games against Tampa 

 

14 hours ago, richard464 said:

They also said that Montreal has not won a game in Tampa Bay since 2017!

It has been that way since the Habs swept Tampa in the first round of 2014 playoffs.  From the start of the 2014-2015 season onwards, Tampa has been the Hab's nemesis bogeyman in head-to-head matchups, way long before Tampa won the Cup.  That's how long this streak has extended.  Old timers on this forum who watched games from that period to date can attest to the fact.  Every time Tampa gets swept in the playoffs, they rebound to become stronger than before.  

So for me, this series isn't so much about battling for the Cup but more about the Habs' ability to exorcise & lift the curse against their longtime League nemesis.  Forget the Cup, let's talk head-to-head matchups. With a new roster, new coach, new system, I was curious to find out whether things will change.

But back to the series discussion. Do you feel that Richardson made a tactical blunder by playing Evans ahead of Armia in Game 1? Prior to that game, Evans had not played for 9 games whereas Armia arrived in time and took part in the pregame skate.  Not saying it would've changed the result, but Armia in that 4th line might've given that 4th line more spark and opportunities.  No disrespect to Evans, but Armia is the ENGINE of the 4th line pulling slow moving Perry and Staal along.  Armia is the one who protects the puck better than anyone else in the Habs' lineup.  Armia and Anderson are the only Habs who can outmuscle big defenders into the opponent O zone.  Ask yourself honestly, between Armia and Evans, who is more likely to provide secondary scoring in the opponent O zone? I wonder how Molson must've felt spending the coin to rush Armia on private jet to be ready to play, only to have him watch the game from the sidelines?

More importantly, do you think fatigue is finally affecting the Big 4 D who aren't speedy players to begin with? They've played heavy minutes for 17 consecutive games! Do you sense that the legs are finally giving way, affecting their ability to chase down and intercept opponent forwards entering the D zone?  When players are fatigued, they don't think straight, react instinctively, and old bad habits resurface.  Do you think Chiarot's own goal in Game 1 was an indicator of fatigue coming to roost?

I'm going to say this again, if the Habs keep allowing opponent forwards a free pass through the neutral zone into the D zone without challenging them or at least extend their sticks to try to pry away the puck, they're going to get burnt eventually.  For so many games now, my eyes kept seeing whenever an opponent forward tries to enter the D zone, the Habs D back away into their own D zone looking to narrow the path or block the shot without proactively challenging their man or the puck.  It's basically an open invitation for opponents to take shots inside the D zone and see how many shots the Habs can hope to block.  Even blind squirrels find a nut eventually, as folks like to say. Same with the frequent icings and hoping to win the defensive face-offs and clear the puck.  Is it possible to win all face-offs?

Lastly, will Richard/Ducharme be out-coached by Jon Cooper?  Cooper was conscientiously matching lines throughout Game 1 whereas Richardson didn't respond and hung the Suzuki line out to get burnt by the Point line.       

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I would agree that Armia needs to be back in for game two. If Evans is not going to slot in for anyone else (which seems unlikely at this point), I would return him to the pressbox for the time being, and go with the lineup that got us through the Vegas series.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure how Richardson is going to get his match-up on the road against Cooper. Cooper was the first sensible coach (it seems) who decided to not go power up against Danault, Gallagher, and Lehkonen. Leafs, Jets, Knights... None of them gave Danault's line the respect it deserved and they got burnt for it. Cooper isn't going to make that mistake.

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Hi all,  been a long time since I was on this site.  I hate to admit it, but Gallagher needs to sit down, we need Tatar to be put in the lineup, sit out Gufstasson and pun in Romanov and Armia in as well and Evans out.

This team will bounce back, they will rebound.

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4 hours ago, jennifer_rocket said:

I would agree that Armia needs to be back in for game two. If Evans is not going to slot in for anyone else (which seems unlikely at this point), I would return him to the pressbox for the time being, and go with the lineup that got us through the Vegas series.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure how Richardson is going to get his match-up on the road against Cooper. Cooper was the first sensible coach (it seems) who decided to not go power up against Danault, Gallagher, and Lehkonen. Leafs, Jets, Knights... None of them gave Danault's line the respect it deserved and they got burnt for it. Cooper isn't going to make that mistake.

A lot has been made of the 18m over the cap thing & this is where it really hurts.

By and large you have 2 types of teams in the NHL.  Elite top players + fillers.  So like, Toronto, Colorado, Edmonton.  Or, you have quality depth through out the lineup - no superstars, but good players at every position - like Las Vegas, NYI and of course, us.

But because they've circumvented the cap, TB has the best of both worlds. They have elite, superstar talent AND depth on all lines.   They have a a 9.5m RW, a 9.5m goalie, an 8.5m centre, Two defensmen at $7m or more - and another 7 or 8 guys all between $5m - 7m.    If they had to be cap compliant they would have a far worse bottom six and this would be a much fairer final.

Im not saying we cant win (and i still believe we will) but Dougie Hamllton is 100% correct when he said they had a huge unfair advantage. 

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4 minutes ago, maas_art said:

A lot has been made of the 18m over the cap thing & this is where it really hurts.

By and large you have 2 types of teams in the NHL.  Elite top players + fillers.  So like, Toronto, Colorado, Edmonton.  Or, you have quality depth through out the lineup - no superstars, but good players at every position - like Las Vegas, NYI and of course, us.

But because they've circumvented the cap, TB has the best of both worlds. They have elite, superstar talent AND depth on all lines.   They have a a 9.5m RW, a 9.5m goalie, an 8.5m centre, Two defensmen at $7m or more - and another 7 or 8 guys all between $5m - 7m.    If they had to be cap compliant they would have a far worse bottom six and this would be a much fairer final.

Im not saying we cant win (and i still believe we will) but Dougie Hamllton is 100% correct when he said they had a huge unfair advantage. 

No doubt. I agree entirely. Unfortunately, the NHL/NHLPA can do nothing about it given the current CBA. Not that either care.

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1 hour ago, maas_art said:

A lot has been made of the 18m over the cap thing & this is where it really hurts.

By and large you have 2 types of teams in the NHL.  Elite top players + fillers.  So like, Toronto, Colorado, Edmonton.  Or, you have quality depth through out the lineup - no superstars, but good players at every position - like Las Vegas, NYI and of course, us.

But because they've circumvented the cap, TB has the best of both worlds. They have elite, superstar talent AND depth on all lines.   They have a a 9.5m RW, a 9.5m goalie, an 8.5m centre, Two defensmen at $7m or more - and another 7 or 8 guys all between $5m - 7m.    If they had to be cap compliant they would have a far worse bottom six and this would be a much fairer final.

Im not saying we cant win (and i still believe we will) but Dougie Hamllton is 100% correct when he said they had a huge unfair advantage. 

I'll say again what I've said before: I don't think Tampa broke any rules in terms of circumventing the cap. What they did is technically allowed in the rulebook and was in some ways a genius way of getting around the cap.

My problem is the timing of the injury returns. Kucherov has surgery in December 2020. And after 5+ months of being out, he is deemed 100% on exactly the day the playoffs start. Brisebois is quoted as saying the timing worked out perfectly and that he couldn't have scripted it any better because it would have been worse if he had returned any earlier or any later. Then Stamkos goes down in April and miraculously is also back at just the right time. It just seems quite suspicious that it worked out exactly right for them with not one but both of their star players. I really feel that Kucherov was likely to have been healthy before the playoffs but that they had already added excess salary in his absence, so they just asked him to stay out longer. At that point, they know they're making the playoffs, Kucherov says okay because it gives his team added starpower to use his salary, and thus faking that the injury is there longer than it actually is works out to their advantage.

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1 hour ago, habsisme said:

the nhlpa is never going to be against what tampa did, it creates more money for the players so I don't think this is likely to change. What we need is a cap that continues into the playoffs

Until this year with this happening with Tampa I never knew that the cap wasn't present in the playoffs? How exactly is this set up. I know you can carry extra players during the playoffs. It still should be you can only dress a cap compliant team for each game. Otherwise couldn't a team going into the playoffs sign guys to a stupid contract , wink wink it's two way while your in the minors it's X but as soon as playoffs come we pay you XXX and call them up from the farm team. They could even tell the farm team coach don't play the player if they didn't want to play there while waiting?

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4 hours ago, habsisme said:

the nhlpa is never going to be against what tampa did, it creates more money for the players so I don't think this is likely to change. What we need is a cap that continues into the playoffs

The NHL has seen this and might bring it up during negotiations next time, in order to close the loop-hole. 

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4 hours ago, CaptWelly said:

Otherwise couldn't a team going into the playoffs sign guys to a stupid contract , wink wink it's two way while your in the minors it's X but as soon as playoffs come we pay you XXX and call them up from the farm team. They could even tell the farm team coach don't play the player if they didn't want to play there while waiting?

Fairly certain that the players are only paid for the regular season . They do not get paid for playoffs 

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This isn’t a nice thing to say but I’m starting to think that Montreal might not score any goals in the finals .  They just can’t generate any serious scoring chances snd shen they go the guy stops it easy

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