Monday, March 24, 2008

A crushing defeat: Habs 7 Sens 5

I love how well this photo illustrates the crushingness of tonight's loss...

Wow. Just... wow. I can't believe how ugly those first two periods were. And more frustrating was how well the team played in the third period. Why not just play that way all game long? I have to admit, I was watching the game with some friends, and I stopped watching once it was 6-1 and watched a few episodes of The Office. The American edition. Steve Carell is hilarious. We checked back with 10 minutes gone in the third, and it was 7-4. So we watched the rest of the game, which ended 7-5. A lot better than the 7-1 score going into the third.

I'm pretty sure this loss wasn't because Chris Kelly and Dean McAmmond were out, even if those two are valuable contributors. If it was, we're in trouble for a while. I hope Cody Bass plays tomorrow, because he's a Kelly-esque hard worker.

Is it wrong that I laughed when Wade Redden trip himself and smashed into the boards behind the net? He's a great person in the community. He gives a lot back to the city. He might be a good leader. But he's been terrible for most of the last two seasons. His tripping and smashing into the back boards, turning the puck over to the Habs for an easy goal, is a microcosm of the season we've seen from him: a complete disaster. At this point, I don't think Bryan Murray would want him back even if Reds agrees to sign for $1.5M or something ridiculous.

Where the hell did Randy Robitaille learn to play that hard? Maybe we should scratch him every other game, so he always feels he's got something to prove. only gave him one hit, but I saw one shift where he had at least two, and he finished with two assists and was +2 on the night.

The Sens' powerplay was terrible. Eight powerplays, including a 5-3 in the third that could have made it a tie game, but they bombed. I'm not sure what the problem is. Certainly frustrating is seeing Jason Spezza or Dany Heatley trying to stickhandle through the neutral zone, have the puck knocked back, and havign to regroup and try again. Although dump-and-chase on the powerplay is ugly, it might be necessary. Puck movement in the offensive zone--when it is eventually gained--is usually fine, but shots don't get through. The powerplay's been clicking the last few games, but not tonight.

The floodgates have opened offensively for Mike Commodore! The man has two assists in the last two games. Outstanding. Also of note: Martin Lapointe got a goal and an assist and now has five points in 12 games with the Sens. Andrej Meszaros shot 13 towards the net, even though 5 got blocked on the way. He's continuing to improve, despite his -2 rating tonight, and he might be priority number one this off-season.

The goaltending situation got a little cloudier. When Martin Gerber allowed three goals in the first period, including some poor ones, and Ray Emery came in for the second, I thought there was some drama. Then Emery allowed four goals in the second, including some poor ones, and it addressed no concerns. Then Murray announced that Gerber would start again tomorrow in Buffalo, and it might be his last chance to prove he can be the starter. Although Emery will be tagged with this loss, Gerber has played poorly in three of the last four.

I don't know what else to say. The CASH line combined for 6 points, with Daniel Alfredsson getting three assists. Although Heater's Drive for Fifty campaign is getting less likely, his two goals tonight brough the season total to 39, so six games to score eleven more goals.

Tomorrow's game against the Sabres can go a long way in helping me forget tonight's. But right now, the assignment I have to write--which is due tomorrow--will be extremely difficult due to all these distracting questions about my team's playoff hopes. Do the Sens have no consideration for the lives of their fans? So selfish.
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