Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Habs Meltdown Painful

It's probably a sign of the times but in the old days a car on Sherbrooke St. adorned with a Bruins flag wouldn't last long before being vandalized.
Never mind the world economic meltdown, the Canadiens collapse hurts a lot worse.

If you are, or know a true Canadiens fan, (and who doesn't) these last two weeks have been particularly painful. Watching the Canadiens perform recently is like attending the proverbial train wreck. Problem is, the consensus around the water cooler is that things are not looking to get better and this year's season looks grim with a distinct possibility that the team won't make the playoffs.
Mind you, not everyone is upset about the situation. Commentators at the Toronto Sports Network (TSN) are enjoying a healthy case of schadenfreude, recounting in delicious detail the problems that beset Nos Glorieux.

Pierre McGuire's colour commentary on last week's broadcast of the Canadiens/Avalanche game was particularly painful. True the Canadiens played poorly, but they did win the game and while they deserved to be called out for poor play, his comments were beyond the pale. This from a Maple Leafs fart-catcher who once put a positive spin on a 5-1 Leafs loss.
Why are the Canadiens so bad? Except for the injured Lang, they are essentially the same team that played so well for the first forty games. This usually means that there is either dissension in the ranks or that the coach has lost control of the team or can no longer motivate them.

Turning to Gainey and Carbonneau, it's plain to see that they are in total panic (though you'd never know it from Gainey's poker face), making moves that even a part-time fantasy league coach can recognize as dumb and desperate.
Their latest move is sitting the struggling Alex Kovalev. Do they think this will improve the motivation of this moody Russian or increase his value on the trading scene? Look how well the exercise worked with MICHAEL RYDER!
Next, the logic in acquiring Mathieu Schnieder, a player past his prime and incidentally one whom they traded away while in his prime, is to say the least, somewhat suspect.
And finally, using the Hamilton Bulldogs as punishment for under-performing players doesn't seem much of a plan either.
It's hard to say if management will last the season. Montreal's jock-sniffing sports writers have always acted as an extension of the team, choosing to report the positive, lest they be banished from the dressing room.

Montreal is not Toronto, one thing is sure, soon the knives will be out.

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