Thursday, April 16, 2009


They won't be smiling for long. (Photo credit Yahoo! Sports)

posted by habsbloggergirl

“Come playoff time, I guess you don’t have too many friends.”

That sentence was a little gem provided by Michael Ryder, who I’ll admit I miss quite a bit, if not just for his smile and generally positive disposition (though his 30 goal seasons were nice too).

Less than an hour ‘till puck drop, and seeing our good friend Rydes, and all I can say is that the term ‘underdog’ barely even begins to describe the situation the Habs are in. But then again maybe not.

I’ve only been hockey-obsessed since after the lockout, so have only 4 seasons of experience (so to speak) and only 2 of playoff experience (well of the Habs’ playoff experience anyhow), with the third starting very shortly. In those two years we’ve played Carolina, Boston and Philly. 3 teams, 3 completely different stories.

In Carolina, we chased Marty Gerber from the net and led Carolina to discover the invaluable asset that is Cam Ward, who led them to a cup that very year. In Boston, we learned that history means nothing (regular season), but yet it means everything (rivalry). In Philly, we made stars out of Marty Biron and R.J. Umberger.

I think we have to face the fact that the Canadiens are in the business of making stars. And unfortunately not out of our own players. How many francophone players play well against us? How many Eric Coles and Rich Peverlys are there, who aren’t too bad but look like Ovechkins and Crosbys when they’re in town? How many players profess their love of the Bell Centre, while in the visitors’ dressing room?

This needs to end. Right now. BEFORE anyone steps onto the ice tonight. We don’t need Shawn Thornton scoring on us again, or anyone else on the fourth line for that matter. Other teams tend to step up to face us, not necessarily because of who we are today, but because of who we’ve been. I think it’s time we push them back down a step.

The thing is, with Boston it’s different, just like with Toronto it’s different. No matter how bad these teams are (or how bad we are) when we play them, they play like they are number one in the league. And, usually we rise to the occasion as well. No boring games in the cards there…

I’ve read countless articles saying that the rivalry is what will give us a chance. But as Kovalev so eloquently explained yesterday, it’s the media who builds up this rivalry. Not that it doesn’t exist, but it’s possible that it doesn’t hold the value the media believes it does. Anything is possible (come playoff time anyway).

So what does this mean? Will tonight be an evenly weighted game, or will Boston pummel us? Will we play the underdog card, and somehow pull off a couple of wins? As I have mentioned countless times, Kovalev is the key. If he plays to win, we will, as long as Price doesn’t give up too many softies.

One thing’s for sure. Boston’s not gonna give up easily. But let’s just hope the Habs don’t either. All I can say is that they’d better be ready for anything and everything.

Feels like ‘93? We’ll see soon enough.

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