The Canadiens will be back in Brossard Friday to prepare for their back-to-back weekend against the Penguins and Bruins. They will hit the ice at 11am ET for training. This will be newcomer Michael Ryder’s first practice with the team after having a quiet debut against the Leafs on Wednesday. Hopefully there will be updates on the statuses of Bourque and Diaz who are both out with concussions. It will be interesting to see if Therrien gives Budaj a game this weekend or holds off to have him start in the upcoming week. I would prefer Price to get both nods in this back-to-back, especially since the team has had two days off in between games. However, the last two games that Budaj played he did very well and could earn himself a new contract with Montreal this summer if it continues.
There was no hearing for Mike Brown regarding his hit on Josh Gorges that sent him to the showers early in the game. Even though the hit could have had a worse ending, many felt that it did not warrant a game misconduct or a 5-minute major on the play. Whatever side of the fence you may be, the referees called it like they saw it and it sent a message to the players that they were not going to allow the game become a circus. No injury, no fine and no suspension – move on.
Three years ago, Team Canada won gold over the Americans in overtime in the 2010 Olympics held in Vancouver. The next set of Winter Olympic games is only a year away and we are waiting to see if the NHL will allow their players to play. If they do, which I imagine they will, it is hard not to see Carey Price being one of the goaltenders selected to represent the country.
Erik Cole made his debut for the Dallas Stars against the Edmonton Oilers Thursday night. Unfortunately for Cole and his new team, they were spanked by a score of 5-1. Cole played a total of 14:58 TOI where he had one shot, two giveaways and a -2 rating. It’s only his first game and Ryder was a -1 with no shots in his. Both players will adjust and become more accustomed to their new teammates. Time will tell who really won this trade.
The Hamilton Bulldogs are to announce something big at 9am ET Friday morning. Last week, I reported that the Bulldogs would be extending their affiliation with the Canadiens for three more years and that the official announcement would be out this week. Well, it is coming! The Bulldogs will be staying at Copps Coliseum, at least for now.
Former Hab Mathieu Darche has not been out of work for THAT long. He has now teamed up with RDS so expect to see him on your televisions Habs fans.
The Calgary Flames were bold and sent an offer sheet to O’Reilly which he signed. They stated that the price was too high through trade so they took that route to try to make their team better. However, not long after, actually while the two teams were playing, the Colorado Avalanche decided to match the offer and keep their young player. Due to this, O’Reilly can not be traded for a year.
Every team in the Northeast division played on Thursday except the Canadiens. The Habs only hold the lead over Boston by one point and they have three games in hand with a match coming up against Montreal on Sunday. If the Habs want to try to hold on to the top spot, they will have to find a way to come out with two victories against very good opponents.