Friday, May 10, 2013

Thanks For Coming Out, 2013 Montreal Canadiens

Even though the Senators helped them get to that 2nd-seed, the Montreal Canadiens may believe now that it was a trap, as the Sens handled the Habs in five games in the series which had the most gamesmanship in the first round by a long-shot. Verbal jabs aside, the Habs couldn't get anything working past Game Two and despite some bad breaks along the way-- they could get over them and now look ahead to next year.

It wasn't a total lost year for the Habs, as they did rebound nicely from the dismal season they had last year and utilized a youth movement with Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher playing a big role in the Canadiens rebuild this season, especially with all the injuries they had to deal with (13th in Man Games Lost). Max Pacioretty came back with a vengeance  leading the team in scoring with the returning Michael Ryder almost being a point-per-game player (21 pts. in 27 games) when he moved back to Montreal. Yet, the Habs are probably not going to be a high scoring team when they get back to a full season, but they do get a lot of contribution from the defensive side of things.

That's where PK Subban and the oft-injured Andrei Markov come in, both putting up 30 points and having 10 or more goals and 20 or more assists in their columns. Had Raphael Diaz played a full season, he'd be up there, too-- but injuries definitely held him back. There's a lot of promise in Diaz, so that's a high spot.

And there not much more you can say about Carey Price, who had a solid first season with his new contract in tow. More over, Peter Budaj showed how much of a valuable back-up he could be with his 8-1-1 record and coming in to perform solidly and give Carey Price a rest.

Even with all of this success and what Marc Bergevin has done with this team, the mishap in the playoffs will be what most fans will remember, especially with the bit of a slip-up they had in the last weeks of the season. It's always a grind in Montreal, a bigger one when they fall out of the playoffs in a premature fashion.

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