Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Morning and Afternoon Bell and Habs-Bruins Game Preview for Thursday January 12, 2012

Today's honorary ringer: Mike Cammalleri.

So who cares if Cammy says it the way it is. He's pissed, he's not contributing, he's upset the new coach isn't using him to the levels he was used to and he uttered a few words that made international headlines.

Really, do we have nothing better to do than criticize Cammalleri for being pissed in front of a camera. Right or wrong, it's a trivial story detail. Let's get on with it.

The Habs now play the Bruins tonight, another huge test that will measure where the team stands right now. The first 2 games of 2012 offered slightly compelling narratives. The Jaro fest was ugly. It was a nice night for the Slovak but Jaro did not have to make 40 saves to win the game. The Habs made it easier for the Blues.

Another big opponent tonight with the Bruins battling for the Conference lead. Look at these Bruins as the new Flyers of the 70's, the Causeway Bullies. Tough from the goal out. Offensively creative, big on D, big up front, skilled, blue collared. After stumbling out of the gate, the Bruins are now poised to make another run. Forget the Habs, think of the upcoming playoffs as something to salivate over. One can only hope for a final 4 involving Boston, Philly, the Rangers and a team like the Devils or the Penguins. Heck even the Caps, outside looking in, can complete the formidable quatro.

Montreal has played decently if not to say quite well against the Bruins this year. It's a rivalry that just naturally extracts the competitive juices out of the players. Because a win against the Bruins, Leafs, Habs means more than a win: it's a psychological statement that rolls into the chapters that make up the continuous and never ending storyline. The Kovy hit on Tucker, the Chara hit on Pacioretty, whatever it is, even when the players are long gone, it continues to fuel the dynamics of the interminable script and therefore enhances the emotional volume of the next game.

Habs-Bruins means a win is more than a win. Montreal can say they took 3 out the first 4 of the new year and start using that as a swivel to propel them into a run for the playoffs that becomes more legitimate.

Tonight it means the team has to dedicate itself to impeccably sound hockey. Carey has little margin for error, the power play has to click, the D has to play a tight road game and leave the unnecessary fancy shmancy behind - yes you, PK, and the forwards have to skate hard and force the Bruins into costly mistakes. It's a tall order. An order so tall that it would look down and see Zdeno Chara's head.

1 comment:

Public Domain said...

It's looking like I'll be relying quite a bit on my old friend-in-a-bottle to get through the next game/week/season. These too will be tall orders.

Your probable Eastern playoff scenario does make me salivate.. in the way I do just before vomitting.

ahh the hopes of October.....

and, ahhh, Go Habs Go