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Series Thread: Round 1 vs. Tampa Bay Lightning


powerplay2009

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Well, I figure it's good to get a thread on our series starting Wednesday. If this thread is best moved or removed, please do so Mods. Just didn't see one yet, so I figured I would get on it.

Schedule

I'm having trouble getting the schedule up, so hopefully someone smarter than me can take care of that. :lol:

This should hopefully be enough to get us started. :)

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Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens


Lightning won season series 3-0-1


April 16: at Tampa Bay, 7, CNBC


April 18: at Tampa Bay, 7, CNBC


April 20: at Montreal, 7, NBC Sports Network


April 22: at Montreal, 7, NHL Network


x-April 24: at Tampa Bay, 7, CNBC


x-April 27: at Montreal, TBD, NBC Sports Network


x-April 29, at Tampa Bay, TBD


x-If necessay


Maybe this'll work :wacko:


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Looking forward to this!

Im going to be out of the country starting wednesday ( so no playoff sigs :( ) but I will be back in time for the 2nd round so les boys had better be still playing!!

My prediction is Habs in 5 actually. Split first 2, then win 3, 4 and 5. I know that sounds lofty but with Bishop out i think we are going to break through quickly and once our offense gets a little confidence we will get rolling.

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Guest mrsmarkov

Ya, CRB is working on a first round thread and will be posting soon. My Stanley Cup playoffs thread was locked.

Anyways, I too like jedimaas believe the series will go to 5 games, in favour of the Habs. I believe we will win the first game, the second goes to the Bolts, then we will win 3,4 and 5.

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If the team plays how it has for most of the season—particularly in the games against Tampa—they're most likely going to lose, and do it decisively. It's not going to matter who Tampa's goalie is if we give up 35-40+ shots every game. If we lost one of the games 1-0 in triple overtime with Carey making 75 saves, I wouldn't be surprised. It's incredibly frustrating, because I think our roster is superior in every respect except for Stamkos. Better depth at every position, better defensive forwards, better goaltending, a unanimously better defence even with Tinordi and Beaulieu sitting. Maybe the most complete, high-end Montreal Canadiens team in twenty years. We're going up against a Tampa team that just lost its Hart-worthy starting goalie, traded its captain midseason—the soul of that franchise for a decade, and has a few somewhat significant injuries other than Bishop. Not to mention the Malone thing. They've been playing above their heads all season. Ripe for the picking for a team with killer instinct. There's no reason we should be going into this series as a ludicrous underdog that needs a total fluke or decade's worth of luck to win, and yet here we are.

I'm excited for the playoffs, because as a sports fan it's impossible not to be excited about the Stanley Cup playoffs. But I get the feeling we're about to see a comprehensive deconstruction of the Therrien "system" and Bergevin's perceptions of "character" and "toughness". We "got embarrassed" last year against Ottawa's physicality and unsustainable goaltending. Now that they've overcompensated in an attempt to prevent that from happening again, what's the excuse going to be when a "finesse"/skilled team beats us cleanly?

Tampa in 4 or 5 barring phenomenal luck, a complete 180 by Therrien and his staff, or Carey Price reawakening the ghosts and turning into a machine. I'm just hoping the right people are blamed for it.

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If the team plays how it has for most of the season—particularly in the games against Tampa—they're most likely going to lose, and do it decisively. It's not going to matter who Tampa's goalie is if we give up 35-40+ shots every game. If we lost one of the games 1-0 in triple overtime with Carey making 75 saves, I wouldn't be surprised. It's incredibly frustrating, because I think our roster is superior in every respect except for Stamkos. Better depth at every position, better defensive forwards, better goaltending, a unanimously better defence even with Tinordi and Beaulieu sitting. Maybe the most complete, high-end Montreal Canadiens team in twenty years. We're going up against a Tampa team that just lost its Hart-worthy starting goalie, traded its captain midseason—the soul of that franchise for a decade, and has a few somewhat significant injuries other than Bishop. Not to mention the Malone thing. They've been playing above their heads all season. Ripe for the picking for a team with killer instinct. There's no reason we should be going into this series as a ludicrous underdog that needs a total fluke or decade's worth of luck to win, and yet here we are.

I'm excited for the playoffs, because as a sports fan it's impossible not to be excited about the Stanley Cup playoffs. But I get the feeling we're about to see a comprehensive deconstruction of the Therrien "system" and Bergevin's perceptions of "character" and "toughness". We "got embarrassed" last year against Ottawa's physicality and unsustainable goaltending. Now that they've overcompensated in an attempt to prevent that from happening again, what's the excuse going to be when a "finesse"/skilled team beats us cleanly?

Tampa in 4 or 5 barring phenomenal luck, a complete 180 by Therrien and his staff, or Carey Price reawakening the ghosts and turning into a machine. I'm just hoping the right people are blamed for it.

I agree 100%, but hope for better.

Here's my tl;dr version of your post:

Therrien

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Well, I figure it's good to get a thread on our series starting Wednesday. If this thread is best moved or removed, please do so Mods. Just didn't see one yet, so I figured I would get on it.

You figured correctly :) We'll use this thread to discuss the series as a whole in between games which will of course all have their individual GDT. Also, the thread is now up in Around the League for the other 7 series.

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It's frustrating as hell being a die hard fan for this team. For the longest time we have showed a glimpse of promise, followed by failure. Our roster looks good going into this playoff run, though. My only worry is the whole "chain theory".

Goalie? Check

Goal Scorers? Check

Defenders? Check (eh)

GM? Check

Coach = weak link.

It is unbelievable that a city like Montreal can't put forth a young, modern day NHL coach who understands the more aggressive systems that win Cups now. I like our chances regardless, because of my bias as a habs fan and faith in Carey; but when(if) we are knocked out, I think a lot of people will be looking at Therrien.

The first 2 periods on Wednesday are SO important. If we can get two or three goals in and find some momentum/confidence, it's all over. I've played on teams in college vs a shaky goalie and it is such a make or break situation. If you can't score, it hurts the entire team's morale, defense will cough up turnovers and Price will get frustrated. BUT, if we score some goals and everyone starts to think Lindback is a sieve, every guy on our roster will be hungry for a goal. Praying we get at least 2 goals real quick, and hopefully get through this round without wearing out Price in 7 games.

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If the team plays how it has for most of the season—particularly in the games against Tampa—they're most likely going to lose, and do it decisively. It's not going to matter who Tampa's goalie is if we give up 35-40+ shots every game. If we lost one of the games 1-0 in triple overtime with Carey making 75 saves, I wouldn't be surprised. It's incredibly frustrating, because I think our roster is superior in every respect except for Stamkos. Better depth at every position, better defensive forwards, better goaltending, a unanimously better defence even with Tinordi and Beaulieu sitting. Maybe the most complete, high-end Montreal Canadiens team in twenty years. We're going up against a Tampa team that just lost its Hart-worthy starting goalie, traded its captain midseason—the soul of that franchise for a decade, and has a few somewhat significant injuries other than Bishop. Not to mention the Malone thing. They've been playing above their heads all season. Ripe for the picking for a team with killer instinct. There's no reason we should be going into this series as a ludicrous underdog that needs a total fluke or decade's worth of luck to win, and yet here we are.

I'm excited for the playoffs, because as a sports fan it's impossible not to be excited about the Stanley Cup playoffs. But I get the feeling we're about to see a comprehensive deconstruction of the Therrien "system" and Bergevin's perceptions of "character" and "toughness". We "got embarrassed" last year against Ottawa's physicality and unsustainable goaltending. Now that they've overcompensated in an attempt to prevent that from happening again, what's the excuse going to be when a "finesse"/skilled team beats us cleanly?

Tampa in 4 or 5 barring phenomenal luck, a complete 180 by Therrien and his staff, or Carey Price reawakening the ghosts and turning into a machine. I'm just hoping the right people are blamed for it.

I'm not so sure about having the better D. If Murray and Bouillon both play, our D becomes significantly worse. Even bad, I would say. I don't know if anyone has the win-loss record when those two are playing in the same game, but I would think that it is not good.

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Looking forward to this!

Im going to be out of the country starting wednesday ( so no playoff sigs :( ) but I will be back in time for the 2nd round so les boys had better be still playing!!

My prediction is Habs in 5 actually. Split first 2, then win 3, 4 and 5. I know that sounds lofty but with Bishop out i think we are going to break through quickly and once our offense gets a little confidence we will get rolling.

I hope you're prediction comes true, unfortunately Lehner hasn't gotten the memo yet that he's not supposed to be any good.

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I'm not so sure about having the better D. If Murray and Bouillon both play, our D becomes significantly worse. Even bad, I would say. I don't know if anyone has the win-loss record when those two are playing in the same game, but I would think that it is not good.

I'd aruge we've got a better high end and distribution of talent. Obviously, I would prefer not to have Bouillon or Murray—let alone both—in the lineup (I actually looked and the team was something like 5-7-2 with both of them playing :P). But it's Therrien, and at least one of them is going to play. Even with Murray playing slightly too many of the wrong minutes, I don't think it's biased or unreasonable to say that Tampa has an inferior collection of personnel.

They'll probably perform better, though, because Cooper has used them properly this season. They'll also almost certainly look better both on the ice and the stats sheets. But that has more to do with the mind-bendingly terrible offensive system Therrien employs which consistently makes any opponent other than the Ottawa Senators look like a defensive dynamo.

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I'd aruge we've got a better high end and distribution of talent. Obviously, I would prefer not to have Bouillon or Murray—let alone both—in the lineup (I actually looked and the team was something like 5-7-2 with both of them playing :P). But it's Therrien, and at least one of them is going to play. Even with Murray playing slightly too many of the wrong minutes, I don't think it's biased or unreasonable to say that Tampa has an inferior collection of personnel.

They'll probably perform better, though, because Cooper has used them properly this season. They'll also almost certainly look better both on the ice and the stats sheets. But that has more to do with the mind-bendingly terrible offensive system Therrien employs which consistently makes any opponent other than the Ottawa Senators look like a defensive dynamo.

I began to look closer at the differences between the D, and on paper they look are way better than us. Their entire D corps is in the pluses compared to just 4 of ours (and one of those 4 is Beaullieu!). After PK and Markov there is a huge drop off in talent. Yes, Weaver has been an excellent addition. And Georges will provide some stay-at-home defense (but not much more). If you take PK and Hedman out of consideration and see what you have left, I think that Tampa has the better D. They will be able to role more reliable lines on D. If one looks at the forwards, we only have 2 guys with 20 goals or more. Tampa has 4. Of course this could attributed to the coaching as you say. But if that is the difference maker, then we are doomed.

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I began to look closer at the differences between the D, and on paper they look are way better than us. Their entire D corps is in the pluses compared to just 4 of ours (and one of those 4 is Beaullieu!). After PK and Markov there is a huge drop off in talent.

+/- isn't the most reliable stat to use as a general defensive assessment. Since they're using quite a few unproven players, there isn't a great body of work to go on either, which complicates it. Depending on how they handle the postseason and next year, maybe it'll turn out I was underrating them. I just don't see them having any real advantage, other than not having the particularly below average veterans we do.

Of course this could attributed to the coaching as you say. But if that is the difference maker, then we are doomed.

That's my worry, unfortunately.

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Looking forward to this!

Im going to be out of the country starting wednesday ( so no playoff sigs :( ) but I will be back in time for the 2nd round so les boys had better be still playing!!

My prediction is Habs in 5 actually. Split first 2, then win 3, 4 and 5. I know that sounds lofty but with Bishop out i think we are going to break through quickly and once our offense gets a little confidence we will get rolling.

No playoff sigs :(

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I hope you're prediction comes true, unfortunately Lehner hasn't gotten the memo yet that he's not supposed to be any good.

I think you mean Lindback - Lehner plays in Ottawa :) But Lindback has played well the last few games but I think he's playing over his head right now. He's pretty much always had backup numbers and I think once we crack him open with a few goals, he will be be easy prey. Their backup (Gudlevskis) scares me more as we're not entirely sure what he's capable of.

Has anyone heard anything about Prust and Eller? All it says on TSN is that they are "questionable" for Wed.

Id be surprised if eller is still out although they stopped calling in the flu & started calling it a virus. The fact he hasnt been on skates for a while doesnt help.

Prust has been working hard towards a return but until he's cleared for full contact I wouldnt expect him. I would imagine both will play in the series, but possibly not game 1.

No playoff sigs :(

yeah, sorry bud. I was goint to make an early one but since i wont be here to post its not like they'll be popping up. I am confident we'll be in the second round though so I'll do my best to get them in time for that. :)

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I think you mean Lindback - Lehner plays in Ottawa :) But Lindback has played well the last few games but I think he's playing over his head right now. He's pretty much always had backup numbers and I think once we crack him open with a few goals, he will be be easy prey. Their backup (Gudlevskis) scares me more as we're not entirely sure what he's capable of.

Id be surprised if eller is still out although they stopped calling in the flu & started calling it a virus. The fact he hasnt been on skates for a while doesnt help.

Prust has been working hard towards a return but until he's cleared for full contact I wouldnt expect him. I would imagine both will play in the series, but possibly not game 1.

yeah, sorry bud. I was goint to make an early one but since i wont be here to post its not like they'll be popping up. I am confident we'll be in the second round though so I'll do my best to get them in time for that. :)

Ya, I did post quoting myself to correct that. By the time I noticed it was too late to edit ;). Hopefully you're right. Gudlevskis played a good game for them and we all know what he did vs Canada in the Olympics but his AHL numbers are pretty average. I think if we have scoring issues it will mostly be of our own making.

As for the other comments, John Lu posted Prust and Eller are both practicing in full today on a line with Gionta. Prust hasn't been confirmed to be in for Wednesday but it's a great sign (Prust was also taking PK drills with Bournival).

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I think you mean Lindback - Lehner plays in Ottawa :) But Lindback has played well the last few games but I think he's playing over his head right now. He's pretty much always had backup numbers and I think once we crack him open with a few goals, he will be be easy prey. Their backup (Gudlevskis) scares me more as we're not entirely sure what he's capable of.

Anybody remember that unknown Cam Ward guy we ended up against once we chased Gerber? :ph34r:

To be honest, though, I agree with BCH: if we have scoring issues in this series it will be our own fault and nobody else's. But with that said I think we're going to be okay! :)

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Ya, I did post quoting myself to correct that. By the time I noticed it was too late to edit ;). Hopefully you're right. Gudlevskis played a good game for them and we all know what he did vs Canada in the Olympics but his AHL numbers are pretty average. I think if we have scoring issues it will mostly be of our own making.

Ah sorry didnt see your correction. Indeed I think that with the personel we have - especially with Bishop out - if we dont win this series it will be entirely our doing. On the plus side, it would almost certainly = the end of the MT V2.0 era. I still think we'll win rather handily.

As for the other comments, John Lu posted Prust and Eller are both practicing in full today on a line with Gionta. Prust hasn't been confirmed to be in for Wednesday but it's a great sign (Prust was also taking PK drills with Bournival).

Oh that is a good sign. a couple of days of practice & they should be good to go. Id still be more comfortable with Prust-Pleks-Gio as our shut down line but I guess banking on Eller's defensive game and Plekanec's offensive game makes more sense with the way things have gone this season.

Anybody remember that unknown Cam Ward guy we ended up against once we chased Gerber? :ph34r:

To be honest, though, I agree with BCH: if we have scoring issues in this series it will be our own fault and nobody else's. But with that said I think we're going to be okay! :)

Haha, its funny thats exactly what i thought of when I posted that!! I think the hurricanes were a better team (save Stamkos) and even with Bishop I believe we would beat them. WIthout, I think we'll do pretty well.

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It's really hard for me to decide on this series. Right now, I've got Tampa in 6. I just don't think that the system we played and the personnel that played it in the regular season can win a playoff series against a decent team, which I honestly think Tampa is. I think we have a better chance against them than anyone else though.

But, I just can't shake this feeling that MT knows, at least somewhat, how to win hockey games against good teams. And we have a roster than can carry us to a Cup final, and it starts in the crease. When we played teams like Chicago and Boston, we generally won, and if not we played really well. Like, really well. So it's hard not to be at least a little optimistic. Maybe Therrien actually decides to use a good system when he figures out that we aren't playing the Ottawa Senators, and that the other team actually has a lot of skill. I really hope so. I don't like Therrien as a coach, but this is the time of year where I want everyone on the Habs to have success.

So...uh....Go Therrien Go! I still have no faith though.

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Brandon Prust and Lars Eller both attended practice on Monday as the Montreal Canadiens tuned up for Wednesday's playoff opener against the Tampa Bay Lightning.


It was Prust's first full practice since being shut down around March 19 due to a suspected rib injury. Prust took part in penalty-kill drills alongside Michael Bournival, and later with Brian Gionta. Canadiens' public relations told media that Prust is currently not in game shape and is not guaranteed to play in the opener against the Lightning.


Eller sat out the last three games of the regular season with a flu bug and practiced with the team for the first time since his illness.

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