Monday, December 24, 2007

Game #36

Sergei Kostitsyn - The Lone Star in Dallas

The Canadiens Game in Review

Date: Sunday December 23rd, 2007
Opponent: Dallas Stars
Venue: American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX


Team Stripes


Final Score: 1-4 - Loss

Habs starting goalie: Carey Price (L)
Opposition starting goalie: Marty Turco (W)

Habs goalscorers: Andrei Markov
Opposition goalscorers: Antti Miettinen, Brenden Morrow, Mike Ribeiro, Stu Barnes



2007/08 first
There's a first time for everything, so they say. What they didn't tell you is that every game, something happens for the first time, you just have to look harder in March...

1st Game for Mike Ribeiro against the Habs (3 points)



Play of the game
The play you're straining to see on the press catwalk monitor...

This isn't the night to give the play of the game to the Stras, although I easily could. The play of the game was our lone goal, Markov's 9th. A quasi 2-0n-1 emerged as we broke into Dallas' end and S. Kots fed a beautiful pass through the defender's legs right to Markov. There Andrei made no mistake burying it as we avoided being shutout.



Game puck
Trophies are for the end of the year, play well in the game, you get a lovely puck...

Sergei Kostitsyn

Many people believed that with linemates such as Patrick Kane and Sam Gagner in London over the past 2 years Sergei was the weakest on the line and wasn't a complete player himself. He may be the weakest of the 3, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. He is a great player and he is a complete player. His pass was just one of many good, aggressive plays from the 20 year old tonight.



Dome hockey team
We're going into the last minute with these 6 (and they're attached to the ice, so they're not coming off)...

Forwards

Sergei Kostitsyn
- He got his 4th point of the year in only his 6th game which for a Habs rookie is quite something. He will likely overtake Ryder in points soon as he continues to mow down certain defencemen and 4th-liners in that category

Kyle Chipchura
- I tend to notice him more in losses than wins. I notice him, however, for good solid fore-checking and all around gritty play. Tonight he was one of the few noticeable Habs

Mark Streit
- His best moments tonight came at the point on the PP, as a defenceman, and that his where he should be. Until that happens though I will put him in as a forward if he deserves it, which he did tonight. Whether or not he is a top 9 forward is irrelevant as our 4th best D should be playing D. Markov would be a great 1st-liner, but it doesn't mean I would take him off D

Defencemen

Andrei Markov
- A very nice goal, the Habs' only one, but an otherwise quieter game. Was the only Hab to finish in the + tonight and is now all the way up to -2 for the year

Ryan O'Byrne

- I noticed three things tonight that I really like to see - speed, size and effort. I think that if every Hab had just 2 of those qualities we would be fine. The problem is hat most have the capability for that, but only show 0-1 of those qualities in a game; Ryan Showed all three

Goaltender

Cristobal Huet
- Price never gave us a chance to win and seeing as Huet played well last night I think this was a no-brainer. Carey has yet to show me that he is anything more than an average goalie. I am not interested in what he did in the AHL or WJHC as those are both way worse than the NHL. We continue to throw away points by playing a goalie that we believe should, in theory, most of the time, for the rest of his career, now be a superstar



Eyes on Kovalev
Did he flit and float? Someone ought to keep track...

Maybe Alex's worst game of the season, maybe not. It was, however, his line's worst performance of the year, no question. Playing back-to-back nights continues to be a problem for Alex and co. and that is costing the Habs a chance at a lot of points.

Kovalev's Assessment - Average


Overall Comments

Dallas showed us what a truly great organization looks like and I don't believe we are far off. With many former Stars players/personnel running our team I am confident that the similarities between the teams will only grow. Imagine having 2 great goalies but declaring a #1. Imagine having your best player since 1995 honoured and respected by the team, fans and local media rather than being criticized. Imagine being able to get players like Ribeiro to produce. I think if the media would give Bob and Guy a chance that we wouldn't be imagining for too long.

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