HabsWorld.net -- 

It’s pretty safe to say that the past week has
been one of the most exciting for Montreal fans in quite a while.  It
started with completing the stunning upset over 1st seed Washington and ended
with a victory over the defending champion Penguins to tie that series.  In
Hamilton, the Bulldogs are in the situation as their NHL counterparts, tied 1-1
in their second round.  Plus, from hero to zero back to potential hero
again?  Find out who that could as well the new leader in the Power
Rankings, in the Recap.


The PPR’s are on a cumulative basis with
some bias towards the current week.  The prev. column represents the last
ranking for the player; players not on last week’s list will be slotted back
where they were when returning from injury/benching/recall (italicized numbers). 
Thus, multiple players may have the same previous ranking.  These power
rankings are carried forward from the regular season, no new ones will be started.






Jaroslav Halak

3 The biggest reason the Habs
beat Washington, stellar on Sunday too.
2 Mike Cammalleri 4 5 goals this
week including a pair of game winners, can you ask for more?

Brian Gionta 1 The offence dried up late vs
the Caps but scored in both Round 2 games.
4 Scott Gomez 5 Don’t look
now but he has 4 points already this series.

Tomas Plekanec 2 Has disappeared much like he
did last season, needs to get it together.
6 Carey Price 6 He made 3
saves on as many shots, doesn’t justify a move either way.

Josh Gorges 7 I’m already worrying about the
new deal he’ll soon be commanding.
8 Andrei Markov 8 Played
better before going down, we’ll know more soon injury wise.
9 Dominic Moore 10 Scored the game winning goal
in Game 7, need I say more?

Hal Gill 11 Anyone
criticizing signing him any more?  Gotta love the blocks.
11 P.K. Subban
Started slowly and has
improved notably each game, good to see.

Benoit Pouliot 12 Starting to
come around, playing a physical game if nothing else.
13 Roman Hamrlik 17 Much better this week,
particularly Sunday when called on to play more.

Travis Moen 13 Playing
okay, but really needs to be left on one line to be most effective.
15 Ryan O’Byrne 14 A couple of iffy moments that
could have been costly but okay otherwise.

Marc-Andre Bergeron 18 Well, he
scored a huge goal in Game 7, that’s enough to move up.
17 Andrei Kostitsyn 9 A drop of 8 spots in the
rankings is the highest of the season/playoffs.
18 Maxim Lapierre 20 The
embellishment notwithstanding, I like the hustle he brought this week.
19 Tom Pyatt 19 Safe and steady, same as
always.  Hard to remember he’s still a rookie.
20 Glen Metropolit 16 He doesn’t
look healthy, not bringing anything to the team right now.
21 Ben Maxwell 22 Here’s what put him ahead of
Darche – Maxwell won a faceoff.  Ho hum.
22 Mathieu Darche 22 Not exactly
the bounce back game everyone was hoping for.

Dropped from the rankings: Jaroslav Spacek
(15 – injured) and Sergei Kostitsyn (21 – DNP).

 The Dog

Like the Habs, the Bulldogs split their first
two games of the North Division Finals.  The scene now shifts to Abbotsford
for the next 3 games.


April 29
2 3


Abbotsford 0 2 1 3 0/2 32
Hamilton 0 1 1 2 0/6 32

Attendance:  1,896
3 Stars:
  1) Van der Gulik – ABB  2) Palushaj – HAM  3)

May 2
2 3


Abbotsford 1 0 0 1 1/8 23
Hamilton 2 1 0 3 2/7 23

Attendance:  2,844
3 Stars:
  1) White – HAM  2) Vernace – HAM  3) Jaffray – ABB


One thing that the stats below won’t show is
that Curtis Sanford is ready to return from injury; he has dressed as the backup
for both games in the series.  Yannick Weber is once again out of the
lineup, he is currently day-to-day.


# Player GP G A +/- SH PIMS
4 Michael Vernace 2 0 2 +1 4 0
5 Alex Henry 2 0 0 -1 0 2
6 Chad Anderson 2 0 0 -1 1 2
10 J.T. Wyman 2 0 0 -1 1 0
12 Andrew Conboy 2 0 0 -1 3 0
14 Olivier Fortier 2 0 0 +1 4 0
15 Mike Glumac 2 1 1 E 5 5
18 Dany Masse 1 0 0 E 0 0
19 Brock Trotter 2 1 0 +2 7 4
20 Ryan Russell 2 0 0 -1 2 0
25 Ryan White 2 1 1 +2 1 4
26 Grant Stevenson 2 0 2 -3 3 4
28 Aaron Palushaj 2 1 0 +1 6 0
32 Frederic St. Denis 2 0 0 -1 2 2
42 Hunter Bishop 2 0 0 E 1 0
44 Shawn Belle 2 0 0 +1 4 0
51 David Desharnais 2 1 1 +2 4 2
61 Andre Benoit 2 0 0 E 7 0
82 Gabriel Dumont 1 0 0 E 0 0


# Player Record SV% GAA
30 Cedrick Desjardins 1-1-0 .927 2.02


Goals: Mike Glumac (5)
Assists: Andre Benoit/P.K. Subban (6)
Points: David Desharnais/P.K. Subban (9)
+/-: Shawn Belle (+5)
PIMS: Ryan White (27)
Shots: Brock Trotter (32)

Round 2:

May 4: Hamilton vs
May 6: Hamilton vs Abbotsford
May 8: Hamilton vs Abbotsford
May 10: Abbotsford vs Hamilton*
May 11: Abbotsford vs Hamilton*
* – if necessary


Like in previous weeks, a look at the current
series as well as some thoughts on the 1st round win over Washington:

On Washington:
– All series, we were waiting for the depth players to step it up, it
finally happened.  Of note, 3 players in that game weren’t in the
organization at the beginning of the season.  2 of those 3 (Bergeron and
Moore) scored the lone goals in Game 7.

– In general, I found the series to be more of an extension of the regular
season than a playoff series.  There was about the same level of physical
play (or lack thereof) which I think was a major reason the Habs were able to
come back.  Washington never really found it necessary to up their game
which certainly worked to the Habs’ benefit as they stepped up and played solid
hockey for the most part.

On Pittsburgh:
– It’s hard to even think of a positive when Markov goes down but there is
one with P.K. Subban being up with the club.  The experience he gains from
being thrown into the fire will do wonders for next season when he begins his
rookie campaign.

– Sunday’s win snapped a 5 game, 8 year losing streak of sorts.  The last
time the Habs won a game in May was back on May 7, 2002, a 2-1 OT win over
Carolina.  (Donald Audette scored the winner in case anyone’s wondering).


It’s funny how things can change so drastically
within a season.  Back in July, Jaroslav Spacek was being heralded as
someone who could come in and provide some veteran leadership, solid defensive
play, and help the PP at the same time.  Mid season, most fans wanted him
gone for virtually anything, even a bag of pucks.  Fast forward to today
where now, most seem to want him back from whatever virus he has (which still
officially has not been disclosed) as he’d be a key part of the team’s success
moving forward.  I won’t go that far, but his presence would help to
stabilize a blue line that quite frankly has 4 players logging way too many
minutes, 5 if you cringe at the thought of Marc-Andre Bergeron playing defence. 
From zero to potential hero in mere months, never a dull moment in Montreal…

I also want to correct a rumour I’ve seen the last few days regarding Spacek. 
If he were to retire as a result of this virus (which considering the time he’s
missed is a legitimate possibilty), the Habs would not be relieved of his
cap obligations, the cap hit would remain in full for the next 2 years. 
This is due to the highly unpopular "35 and over clause" which essentially says
any player who signs when they’re 35 years or older has their cap hit count
regardless of whether they’re playing or not – think back to Vladimir Malakhov
in New Jersey a few years ago (he was dealt to SJ with a 1st round pick to
unload the cap hit).  Spacek also could not be waived/farmed out (the cap
hit would remain) and buyouts on those 35+ deals are at 100%.  The only
thing that the team would save is payment of the actual salary, but no cap
relief whatsoever.

If you have a question regarding
this article,
please feel free to drop me a line at
[email protected]