Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Game 63: Canadiens 0, Sharks 4

I have to say it was hard to enjoy last night’s game. I mostly blame circumstances though.

I was “HIO’ed” out by a full day of watching Darren Dreger harangue me about nothing, like Abe Simpson’s verbal battles with the clouds.

For some reason I thought I’d read that the game started at 19:30 hr my time, so I missed a lot of the first period, and the first goal.

Also, the stream I was watching was of very poor quality, very unreliable, so I couldn’t really observe the play very well, my attention was more focused on the Liveblog and the way the Canadiens were subjected to the ridicule of the community.

Still, a 4-0 loss to a team that’s been struggling, rudderless. “Phooey” was my contribution to the post-game discussion.

But as I pointed out during the online discussion/internecine sniping, the Canadiens specifically, but also East Coast teams generally, usually do poorly in their initial game of a West Coast road trip, especially if they don’t acclimate, get a game/day or two in the Mountain Time Zone prior to that. So we can rationalize it somewhat.

Dave Pratt of TSN 1040 Vancouver just did an opinion piece setting up the Sharks’ game against the Canucks tonight. He barely touched on the fact that they just beat the Canadiens.

All he did was lambaste them for their poor record, their dysfunction, their on-and-off love affair with Joe Thornton and his recent struggles on the scoresheet.

He talked about how they had a players’ only meeting on Sunday night. Co-hosts brought up the fact that their problem has been more about their spotty goaltending.

They also mentioned that the most positive development isn’t the way they beat the Canadiens, but the fact that the Flames’ Mark Giordano is now out for the season, and should sink in the standings without their best player.

On to Los Angeles.  I expect that Carey starts the next game, and then Tikker gets a shot since we have a back-to-back situation.

Pierre-Alexandre can settle in little better and try to generate some creativity, some offence, on a team that needs it beyond the first line.

Devo’s also a player who can start settling in after getting bounced around and dropped into the lineup.

The ex-Sabres can show their gratitude after receiving a call from the Governor, give the team a jump.

Jeff Petry and Tom Gilbert can work hard and disprove my hunch that they’re mimeographs of each other, ballyhooed right-handed puck-movers who are darlings of the statisticians and toil in obscurity on poor, losing teams. Guys who have a reputation as good ‘first-pass’ guys but get a little shy around contact.

Another hunch/wish was that Michaël Bournival would get sent down to Hamilton, get on track after a tough start to a season due to injury and roster machinations. Let’s hope that he plays a tonne, gets lots of minutes on special teams, shows leadership, and drags the Bulldogs to the playoffs. We’ll need him in the playoffs, especially the version we had in training camp last year that had the Midas touch.

So yeah, let’s have a palate-cleanser, quickly, don’t want to have this aftertaste lingering.

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