Do Not Pull a Boom – Boom !


One of the darkest moments in Montreal Canadiens history occurred on March 11 2006.

It was a day that normally would bring joy to the fans, the players, the organization and the family of a special player.A day which enables a celebration of a hockey player’ s career. The rise of a young boy through the ranks, the trials and tribulations and the glory of becoming a man in life and on the rink. A day that reminds all of us how  passion and hard work can lead to a life filled with respect, honor and opportunity.

A day that was not supposed to end like this…

Bernard ‘Boom Boom ‘ Geoffrion passed away on the morning of March 11 2006. That night, his number five was raised to the rafters beside that of his Father-in-law, the late Howie Morenz. Tears fell down the cheeks of thousands of spectators during a heart wrenching ceremony at  Le Centre Bell in downtown Montreal.

It should not have been this way. The fans knew it, the players knew it and The Montreal Canadien organization knew it.

Geoffrion retired in 1968 after a sixteen year career. A career which contained a Calder Trophy as the league’s top rookie, two Art Ross trophies as the top scorer, one Hart trophy at league MVP and six Stanley Cups.  Bernard Geoffrion was  the second player in the history of the NHL to score fifty goals in a season. In 883 games, Boom – Boom  netted 822 points – 393 of them being goals. He received over four hundred stitches while breaking  his nose six times. Number five was elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972. A player with all these accomplishments should not have had to wait thirty – eight years to have his number retired.

A lot can happen in that time. Death being one of them.

A man who has toiled the majority of his  life and career within an organization, striving to not only make himself but his team the best they can be, earns the right to witness the fruits of his labor. An athlete’s icing on the cake . A  reminder for generations to come, a souvenir for his grandchildren and their grandchildren . They will look up and see the number that rests above them is that of a boy with a dream.

The Montreal Canadiens commenced immediately to right the wrongs that were inadvertently bestowed upon Geoffrion, his family and the fans. Since that ominous evening in 2006, no fewer than eight numbers have been retired by the Habs . Numbers such as  Butch Bouchard – 3 , Elmer Lach – 16 and Dickie Moore – 12 . These ceremonies , the most apparent examples of the Montreal Organization avoiding the blatant mistake and embarrassment of March 11.

Two More Please … ?

Now is the time for The Montreal Canadiens to arrange all of the elements in to place once and for all. Align the stars atop the Bell Center and move forward into the future with the hopes of children everywhere. Now is the time to retire the final two numbers ( for now ) from a rich and storied past. Jacques Lemaire’ s # 25 and  Guy Lapointe’s # 5 .

Ten Stanley Cups with Habs

Jacques Lemaire skated twelve seasons for the Habs and scored a minimum of twenty goals in each one while capturing eight Stanley Cups. In 853 career NHL games, all with Montreal,  he recorded 366 goals and 469 assists for a total of 835 points. He is one of only six players in the history of the league to score two Stanley Cup winning goals. Mike Bossy, Bobby Orr and fellow Habs Jean Beliveau, Toe Blake and Henri Richard being the others.

Lemaire also won two more Cups as Assistant G.M with Montreal in 1986 and 1993 and his eleventh as Head coach with New Jersey in 1995.

The Montreal dynasty of the 1970′s could not have won four straight cups without their famed ‘Big Three’ on defence – Larry Robinson, Serge Savard and Guy Lapointe. In twelve full seasons with Montreal, two in St.Louis and one in Boston – Guy scored 171 goals and added 451 assists for a total of 622 points in 894 games. In the play-offs alone he scored an incredible 7o points in only 123 games as a defenceman!  Lapointe also holds the record for most goals by a Canadiens defenceman in a season with 28 and most goals by a rookie defenceman with 15. Guy helped the Habs to win six Stanley Cups and was elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1993.

70 Pts in 123 Play-Off Games

The Canadiens waited until Boom Boom Geoffrion passed away before they raised his sweater and they acted to soon in raising Patrick Roy’s to the ceiling. Lemaire and Lapointe accomplished more than Roy in a Canadiens uniform and if one considers personal statistics alone as criteria to have a sweater retired,  each player alone outperforms a few of the players with their numbers already above our heads.

If you choose championships won as the  sole criteria for a number to be discontinued – again , Lapointe and Lemaire ‘s accomplishments are more impressive than a few banners in the Bell Center.

If I were to have lunch with the current owners of the team – The Molson Brothers , I would encourage them to make it a priority to retire these two numbers before it is too late…

Ask Pat Burns.

Drunken Refs and Distraught Moms


Enough is enough.

Injuries , Chinooks , a wife’s time of the month, the dog ate my homework – there are no more excuses for the sad state of affairs known as the Montreal Canadiens.

Saturday night, in a game filled with more comic relief than a duo of Whoopi Goldberg and Robin Williams – the Habs system proved once more to be more unreliable than Mickey Rourke in the late eighties. Jacques Martin’s troupe had the Penguins down and out with a 3 – 1 lead. Momentum was Les Habitants’ seventh man and instead of giving the extra attacker free movie tickets, the Canadiens opted to bench him and duplicate another Jacques (as in Lemaire).

A security guard who misses most hockey games as he does his rounds in a high-rise downtown building – is well aware that a war cannot be won if one of the factions stop shooting. ‘ Cease fire ‘ has replaced ‘ Carpe Diem ‘ on the chalk board in the Habs’ locker room as the Montreal hockey team continues to squander points. Precious numbers that will haunt the team in March as they battle for the final eighth spot and a play-off birth. Aside from the 2007 season when then coach Carbonneau led the team to a high-octane offense and first place in the Eastern division – the team never learns from their ‘ trap mentality’.  M. Martin is not Jacques Lemaire, Hal Gill is not Scott Stevens and Raphael Diaz would have a hard time carrying Scott Niedermayer’s retired sweater to the cleaners.

Patches in Trouble ?

Oops …

The Habs’ Max Pacioretty leveled the Pens’ Kris Letang with a shoulder-to-head shot.
Letang – Before

The hit sent Kris ‘ Mom to the comforting arms of her husband and the player’s nose to Wall-Mart. That type of hit that was considered ‘old-time hockey ‘ in the days preceding the political correctness of our times. Now , it is deemed worthy of sending multiple tapes across the hockey universe so the powers that be can decipher it more than an ancient Mayan code.

The league ‘ s most famous bi-polar man and resident disciplinarian –  Brendan Shanahan , will take a look at the mess and decide whether or not to sweep it under the NHL rug. As is well-known – Pacioretty was the victim in the worst case of non-disciplinarian action in the history of the league last season. This fact should not come into play when Mr. Shanahan makes his decision Monday afternoon. Then again, this is the NHL . It is a league that provides more questions than answers on an almost weekly basis. George W. Bush should be convicted for war crimes yet thankfully for him – Gary Bettman is in charge and George bought season tickets to the Washington Capitals’ games.

Letang - After

Letang recovered and skated on to score the game winning goal in overtime.Unless ‘post-concussion symptoms’ enables players to suddenly evolve into Boom-Boom Geoffrion , Pacioretty’s hit should fly under the radar in a post-Chara apocalyptic future.

The bar has be set in a drunken state. If the barfly  from Chicoutimi to Nova Scotia can’t get a grip on the outcome of any questionable hits …

How can the average fan …?

The Price is Right

Speaking of drunkenness …

Good Ref

The referees in the Habs – Penguins match obviously visited a few of the clubs on Crescent Street in downtown Montreal. Not a problem on most occasions unless the visitation occurs before the game …

Bad Ref

Carey Price covered up the puck longer than Ted Kennedy disguised Chappaquiddick. If the puck had been a hand grenade , Price’s body parts would be across the globe and selling on eBay for a great bargain.

Drug-use, dementia or Alzheimer’s disease  along with a few pints of Guinness can be the only excuse for the referee not blowing the whistle on the play. Price was furious after the game. Shattering his stick into more pieces than a Reeses’ packet. The language he used in describing the play afterwards made George Carlin”s surviving daughter smile. Price was furious at the non-call and carefully went through the ‘ seven words a goalie cannot say on T.V. ‘. Perhaps a little frustration of the Habs’ system may be rearing its ugly head through one of Price’s many masks. He is stuck behind a puck and a hard place – because of the system , Price benefits yet he also loses.

Brendan Shanahan should suspend the referee for two games not Pacioretty.

Enough is enough …

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Chris Nilan knows the game. Check him out !

Eye on the Prize is a great sight for Habs’ fans !

*** In no way do I mean to offend anyone in reference to Alzheimer’s disease, dementia,bi-polar , alcoholism or drug addiction. If I have done so – I apologize. I firmly believe that laughter is a healthy way of dealing with our fears …

Top Ten Signs Crosby Is Back


Sid the Kid has been gone for awhile with his post-concussion symptoms. In fact – the final time the Pens’ superstar laced up his skates , the world was a far different place …

Ghaddafi was alive, twenty-four and in power. Celine Dion was single , poor and a little annoying and Dean Martin was roasting marshmallows – not people.

Here are the Top Ten Signs Crosby is Back …

10. All the Penguins at the Pittsburgh zoo are  following number 87 in a trance through downtown Pittsburgh.

Crosby Returns !

9. Mario Lemieux’s wife is excited to have her sofa clear once again.

8.Sales of Malkin sweaters in decline …

7.The problems of the Pittsburgh Pirates seem smaller all of a sudden.

6.Goaltenders around the league are organizing an ‘ Occupy ” movement.

5. The relatives of Norm Crosby are once again ‘ in the spotlight ‘ .

4. Penguins ‘ coach Dan Bylsma only has to juggle one line now.

3. Somewhere – Bob Johnson is smiling …

2. The ice at all Penguins’ games seem slightly slanted away from Marc Andre Fleury.

and the number one sign that Crosby is back …?

1. Kim Kardashian is preparing pre-nup papers !

Funeral for a Friend


After a long and courageous battle with it`s power-play, the Montreal Canadien organization is sad to announce the passing of it’s  offense.

The origin of many nights of joy throughout the Province of Quebec and North America , the offense passed away in it`s sleep last night .

The offense was in it`s one hundred and fourth year . Pre- deceased by Maurice Richard , Aurele Joliet , Toe Blake , Boom – Boom Geoffrion , Claude ProvostNewsy Malone and Howie Morenz . Survived by Jean Beliveau , Guy Lafleur , Henri Richard , Yvan Cournoyer , Dickie Moore, Elmer Lach , Jacques Lemaire , Steve Shutt and many, many Aunts and Uncles .

The Montreal Canadiens along with the Molson family would like to express their gratitude for ten decades of unflinching support from the many fans . Born in 1909 – the offense served in thirty – three battles winning twenty – four of them . The offense was married six times over the years, with  Molson being their primary love. The pair were together for forty – eight years before an amicable divorce in 2001. The couple reunited in 2009 as the offense has lived out the past four years in and out of sickness. Visitation will be at Le Centre Bell from now until the arena is part of a corporate condominium. At that time – it will cost big bucks to enter the shrine where Lemaire and Lapointe’s numbers do not hang …

In lieu of flowers – the Canadiens’ organization kindly asks that you donate sticks and pucks to the Hamilton Bulldogs .

A memorial fund will also be set up with all monies going to the underprivileged Carey Price and Peter Budaj.

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Guy Lafleur’s Brush with Greatness


If you happened to be a Habs fan between the years 1973 – 1992, Thurso  Quebec was a small mining town that you never visited and possessed only a faint idea of where the town was located. You did know that the village contained an arena with suspect security. A ‘loophole’ in the town’s infrastructure that enabled a young Francophone to sneak in and practice his craft. A young boy who grew into a man. A man who was to become one of the greatest skaters the world of professional hockey would ever see. His name was Guy Damien Lafleur.

Thurso, Quebec

The Flower. Le Demon Blond – The Legend.

Roch Carrier penciled a book entitled ‘The Sweater’. It was the story of a young French-Quebec boy’s idolization of Maurice Richard. The Rocket. The man who led The Montreal Canadiens to five straight Stanley Cups. The player whose legend grew within a single game – a match where M. Richard scored all five goals in a 5 – 1 victory over the team’s enemy – the dreaded Toronto Maple Leafs. The Captain of the team whose suspension caused a riot in downtown Montreal which was quieted only by The Rocket himself taking to the airwaves and demanding calm. If M. Carriere penned the book in the seventies, the number ten of Guy Lafleur would be on the back of the famed ‘sweater’ in lieu of Richard’s number nine.

The ‘ Rocket’

Lafleur’s legend sprouted at the dawn of the 1974 – 75 season after a promising yet disappointing inaugural three years in the league.  Lafleur removed his helmet and in doing so, unleashed his golden locks and scoring prowess on the National Hockey League. It was the beginning of six straight fifty goal seasons and a reign of terror on opposing goalies and flat-footed defencemen. The image of The Flower slowly taking the puck behind his own net as a starting point to one of his rink long rushes is etched into the memories of even the more passive hockey observers. Like a tightly wound spring – that area behind the mesh provided The Flower a launching pad that ccatapulted him up the ice with speed and grace unheard of in the history of hockey. Whatever Lafleur decided to do as he approached his opponent’s zone , a pass, a shot or a deke, all were accomplished without so much as a nod towards decreasing his speed. This is what separated Lafleur from his peers and his successors. Esposito to Bossy. Dionne to Gretzky. Lemieux to Crosby. Lafleur and Lafleur alone owned the ability to remove people from their seats each and every time the puck had the remotest possibility of coming in contact with his stick. Dryden, Savard, Lemaire and Robinson were the Apostles – Lafleur was Jesus and no other Deity could quite skate on water like the famed young man from Thurso, Quebec, Canada.

The Flower in Full Bloom

In 1980, I was fifteen years of age and The Montreal Canadiens were vying for their fifth straight Stanley Cup attempting to match the record set by their ‘Rocket’ powered dynasty of the fifties. Dryden had retired, Scotty Bowman left the coaching position after a disagreement with ownership and the team that had lost only a handful of games (eight in one season alone) had become a shadow of their former selves. Guy Lafleur was hip-checked by Pat Boutette of The Hartford Whalers at the beginning of one of Guy’s spring injected rushes and Lafleur, for the first time in his career was lost to the team with a knee injury for a substantial amount of time. Upon return – Lafleur had lost something. Some say it was his confidence, whatever it was – Guy Lafleur’s goal scoring was in decline and it was the foundation of the completion of Lafleur’s days in a Montreal uniform. It was also the beginning of the end for the Habs ‘ final dynasty.

I was very active in hockey at that time – refereeing, coaching and playing. It was a Saturday morning in early December and I established myself at the local rink to referee a Pee – Wee game. I was in the ref’s room, lacing up my skates and preparing for the match between eleven year old hockey players when I happened to appear at the score sheet. There, in black and white penciled letters was the name that everyone was familiar with. Lafleur. Instead of Guy’s given name next to it was the name Martin. Believe me when I state that being a big Lafleur fan, I knew everything there was to know about The Flower. Where he lived, what car he drove and what foods he ate. You need not be a rocket scientist to discover that he had a son named Martin who was of Pee – Wee age. Trying to remain calm in front of my striped pals, I placed the score sheet down on the table and continued to prepare myself for the upcoming contest. My heart was beating so fast in my chest with the anticipation of seeing Guy Lafleur in the stands  – I thought a cardiac arrest would be my nemesis in my plight to meet my idol.

Several of the Habs’ greats lived in the vicinity of my hometown, Kirkland, Quebec and a few including Bob Gainey,

The ‘Little M’ – Pete Mahovlich

Yvon Lambert and Peter Mahovolich resided in Kirkland. It was commonplace to witness ‘The Little M ‘ walking out of the bank or drugstore. He was a character straight from the movie ‘Slapshot’, big Pete would sport a full length fur coat and a cigar longer than Brian Gionta bulging from his mouth. Approaching him, Gainey or Lambert was relatively easy – nerve wracking yet manageable. Lafleur, on the other hand was never seen and every now and then you wondered if Guy was comparable to Santa Claus.They both blessed you with their favors yet neither shopped at the mall. The prospect of meeting Lafleur made knees wobble and a crying session on Santa’s lap seemed less perilous and more believable.

I employed my night colored helmet in it’s rightful place, committed my whistle to my finger and strode on shaken steps toward the ice surface of the Beaconsfield Arena and a potential sighting of Le Demon Blond. I marched onto the ice and gingerly skated  baby strides toward the space where the parents had grouped to cheer on their ‘jockstrap wearing’ offspring. As I approached the mob of Mommies and Daddies, I peered into the ‘eye’ of the crowd looking for le bleu,blanc et rouge sweater of number ten. It was only on my subsequent pass that I realized Lafleur would be clad in civvies and not the uniform of my favorite hockey team. If Lafleur was present to witness his son – my stupidity was surely to be noticed by the icon. Three or four passes into the game brought me to the realization that my idol was not present and quickly my nerves settled into an absolute concentration of the game at hand. My only distraction became an observation of the younger Lafleur’s abilty and wondering if I were privy to the beginning of another stellar career. Martin was no worse or better than the other skaters and the game was played out uneventfully. One last glance into the crowd was the final operation of my eyeballs as I headed toward the Zamboni’s entranceway along with my fellow referee.

The post game rituals of a referee are relatively the same as a hockey player. Remove your skates, pants and sweater, grab your towel and head to the showers.The main difference is that you have to watch out for only one flicking towel as opposed to the fourteen on a hockey team. Seldom do you get flicked by your refereeing partner as he can’t place the blame on anyone else.

I concluded my shower, dried off and dressed. I put everything into my equipment bag , said my goodbyes to the referee of my game plus the new guys awaiting the start of their game and off I went. In the Beaconsfield arena – the ref’s chamber was at the very end of the corridor far removed from the dressing rooms of the players. A five-minute walk will bring you from one end to another, seven and you are out the front door. I was approximately halfway down the corridor when my heart paid a visit to my mouth. There – fifty paces directly in front of me stood Guy Lafleur – numero dix of The Montreal Canadiens.

Someone should have told my feet that they must follow the forward motion of my torso. Perhaps my feet saw The Flower too and like my brain, could not compute the next move in such a short period of time. My brain kept saying “Go say Hi!” while my body and heart were already on the bus and on my way home. I was like one of those girls in a magician’s box awaiting to be sawed in half. Half of me was real while the other half felt fake. I stood frozen like a Turkey at the grocery store – deep inside I knew that I must approach my hero, say hello and get an autograph. Deep inside I required a diaper…

What…? No Uniform?

Gathering myself – I stepped slowly in Lafleur’s direction as he stood outside his son’s dressing room. He sported a grey overcoat which masked an equally colored suit underneath. He was chatting with another parent presumably about the stupid ref who believed that a professional hockey player would show up in full uniform to watch his son play. One step, two steps was all I could think as my pulse forced the veins in my forehead closer to Lafleur than my nose. Sweat came from places foreign to me. Lafleur’s voice came within earshot. I rehearsed my opening words to him. “Hi Mr. Rick…I am Guy Lafleur…” No – that’s not right said my left brain to my right. “Hi M. Rick Lafleur I am Guy…!”My words were like mice in a blender…all over the place and it was then I decided to maybe just nod at him and get the heck out of Dodge. I hurried my pace and was almost safely past when I made a crucial error in judgment. I looked at his face! His eyes caught mine and suddenly I was like an Irishman at three am…out of time!

I have no idea what I did next aside from turn as quickly as I could and make my way back to where I came from and toward the rear  of the arena and the safe confines of the snowbanks.

To this day I wonder if Guy Lafleur knows just how close he came to a brush with greatness.

In Canada – It’ s a re -Tuque not a re – Cap ! Eh …?


Merry Christmas everyone !

Santa Claus

Snow fell fast in Montreal yesterday. The powdery white stuff accumulated on the cold pavement making the score  Mother Nature 5 – Scott Gomez 0. When Sid the Kid doubles your goal scoring output in one game and icy pellets are more of a threat to incoming teams – IT IS TIME FOR HABS MANAGEMENT TO TAKE A GOOD HARD LOOK IN THE REFLECTION OF THE ICE and DISPEL Gomez to greener pastures. Scott played well against the Rangers yet even Hitler had a great day once in a while …

Habs – Bruins

When the best fight of the night takes place behind the Bruins bench and in the stands , it is a telltale sign the game was not a classic Habs-Bruins one.

Sources have informed me of the reason behind the scrap. A fan was returning from the bathroom and making his way to his seat. The young man had a step on another fan as the two men jockeyed for position. Fan number one gained a couple of strides on the second one and that is where the ‘ fun ‘ began. In the video replay – the footage clearly shows the second man pushing the first man’s head into the stanchion. It was a flagrant cheap shot. A cowardly act by the second fan. The victim lay unconscious on the floor while several of his friends came to his defense with some pushing and shoving.Noone wanted to be deemed the instigator for fear of punishment so the scuffle ended quickly. The man who shoved the head was then seen talking to his friend and motioning towards an usher .

The man’s friend then ran with great speed toward the usher who was bending down to pick something up from the ground. Head down – the usher was sent flying into the air. Glasses and popcorn littering the floor with abandon. Once more – pushing and shoving ruled the minutes yet nothing came of it for fear of punishment by the law. The two victims considered laying criminal charges against the two men yet because of the friendship between the assailants and the police , a decision was reached to walk away.

Gary Bettman must be proud !

Habs play Flyers on Friday at 3 pm ! Amazing that the Americans are able to stop shopping for a couple of hours …

Saturday Night brings Sid the Crybaby Kid into the Bell Center. Snow and Penguins … good mix !

Check out Knuckles Nilan and Eye on the Prize for some more Habs’ related stuff !

Stay Tuned …


Due to technical difficulties , Le Forum de Montreal will return shortly. Thank you for your patience.
Sincerely,
Rick
p.s Scott Gomez played a hell of a game Sarturday night – for once , I am at a loss for words …

Coyote Ugly , Nashville Condoms and Third Base Buffalo Wings


Two of three nights – I got laid.

The first night , Thursday , we met out of town. The two of us returned to her home which was garnished with memories of past visits. A few that knew me  cheered on as I prepared for a night of pleasure.

First base - simple

First base was relatively simple. A few alcoholic beverages will do that. Wanting glances into one another’s eyes with a backdrop of pleasurable music led the way toward a kiss . Lips filled with shivers of  favorable times to come. The bedroom the scene for the assent to second as the marshmallow matress became a foundation for touch , gentleness and a begging for more…

A candle was lit. The mood was set.

We lay on the milky-sheets as our nakedness became one. The flickering light from the surrounding candles gave proof to the smiles on our faces. Shadows cast me as a dark figure. A blackened being about to be one with another. Our

throngs of passion became a wrestling match as the two
of us fought for dominance and position. A combination of seduction and savagery. A route filled toward a tunnel of orgasmic dreams.

She opened and allowed me entry.

A feeling of conquest took over yet allowed for a hint of weakness. The end was nearing until she regained
control.A marathon plausible yet the finish line was near. Finally. An hour long session ended quickly. One fierce motion ejected a hard shot deep into her territory. My body shook. Part relief and part satisfaction took over. A joyous conclusion . A reason to celebrate into waiting arms.

Sleep came quick …

Night Two

My business needed me to hit the road once more. I

departed early . Tiredness played a role along the way. Memories of the previous evening danced in my head like
a fireplace on a cold winters’ eve…

We met ,the two of us – once more.She was newer than others yet experienced as most.It did not take long for the passion to set in. A caress evolving to hardness. A physicality between foes and respected entities.In several quick moves , the hardened floor was the backdrop for small victories.Desires.Yearnings for love both real and imagined.

She fought back…

A battle ensued.A war of feelings and emotions.One would come out on top – yet who ? A quick move on my part

instilled a slight opening.A glint of pleasure flickered in my eyes.A reflection of good things to come.

A quick release this time.A fleeting moment in time.A flick that carried a load of emotion and satisfaction.A
victory that left me as exhausted as a marathon runner on a Sunday afternoon.Victory was mine and I left as quick as I came.

Night Three

Back home …

Happy , tired and fulfilled with promises.Among friends and some detractors.My harshest critics – silenced for a brief moment.

On this night , a friend from since the late sixties arrived.She was limping from a recent altercation.A situation that was discussed yet not prodded.She was in no mood for foreplay , in fact , weakness was on her side.

Despite the fatigue – my legs and muscles were primed.Force took over as I took control.No alcohol – no music. Just two people taking care of business.A duo looking for a healthy match. Quick kisses preceded long thrusts which,in turn,carried a sweetness.An edge which quickly steered my way.

As much as I wanted,victorious ejaculation was out of reach.Two previous sessions perhaps my downfall.Maybe it was
my lack of dominance.Who knew?I rolled over.She tried in vain to attack my senses .Again and again she rolled over me – my nerves shaken with stress.My heart alive yet dead at the same time.Self- satisfaction was her goal.Wanted and eventually fulfilled.I tried not to think as the night eased into further darkness.It did not help.My pain was real…

Two Canadiens’ wins in three nights .

It does not make it pretty …

You Can’t Do That in Movies ( or hockey games )


If the Montreal Canadiens erected a 2 ‘ x 2 ‘ board in front of their goal during practices – ninety percent of the time , the players would hit that board.

Puck you !

Time and again , opposing net minders arrive in town as ‘ just another goalie ‘ in a waterfrozen league. Time and again they leave, named one of the stars among the three star selections. Coincidence ? In the words of George W. Bush … ” I think not …”

Last night was an exception. The Oilers’ pipe-keeper arrived with incredible numbers in this young season. A goals against average of .099 and an off the plexi-glass save percentage of .970. The thirty-eight year old Russian is on top of his game as he leads a young and talented Oiler team atop the Western Conference. Khabibulin is standing on his mask and the Canadiens helped to both diminish and augment his numbers by shooting at his mask and not his skates.Instead of shooting high – Les Habitants aimed lower than ‘ Snooky ‘ on her knees. A site that left Khabibulin smiling with the results of both outcomes.

At least some things are pretty in Montreal

James Reimer , Ryan Miller , Marc-Andre Fleury , Semyon Varlamov and Nicolai Khabibulin. Five men who came, conquered and left Montreal with better bargaining power over their next contracts. Five men who have won in other towns but whose victories were earned with quick stick-work and cat-like reflexes. Against the skaters from Hab-ville , the wins are as easy as a freshly – divorced woman filled with wine . Bet your Gretzky rookie card , each of these guys have the next Canadiens match-up circled heavily on their calendars. Extra tickets will be required as these goalies invite everyone from their second cousins to their very first stick boys from Pee-Wee teams gone -by. Everyone is invited to come and witness their future victories against the not-so-mighty Canadiens de Montreal.

Right Turn Clyde

Clint Eastwood co-starred with an orangutan named Clyde in a 1978 movie titled ‘ Any Which Way but Loose ‘. That movie was followed by a sequel in 1980. The name of the follow -up was ‘ Any Which Way You Can ‘. Unless the Habs are willing to inject their resident orangutan ( Scott Gomez ) into the line-up and hope he starts beating the opposition with his hairy-fists , the team would best be suited to heed the second title as their motto. Don`t do it for the Gipper – do it for Clyde !

Tight is not working as the players hold onto their sticks like a trucker without brakes. If

Clint and Clyde - Box Office Success !

they ( the team ) relax their grips and realize what the critics learned about the two Eastwood films ( Clint was having fun ), maybe the pucks will start filling the net with a little more fluency. The fans and team will enjoy the nightly spectacle and the Canadiens will go on to win Oscars ( Stanley Cups ) for best picture and director. Like Eastwood , the Habs should not rest their laurels with a lifetime achievement award. Spaghetti westerns and Toe Blake have run their course. Modern day hockey is `Unforgiven` with it`s million dollar babies.

Sergio Leone ,Eastwood`s former director, could not provide a script to help solve the Habs problems. Mr. Leone did not do funerals. The best choice would be Bernard Herrmann. The orchestrater behind the music of the majority of Alfred Hitchcock films. Herrmann would be the wise decision because , like Hitchcock , the Canadiens keep everyone in suspense each game. Will the team score is as pressing a question as`Will Tippi Hedren be devoured by birds ` or `Will Janet Leigh be diced into tiny pieces by Norman’s mother.`

 Alfred Hitchcock adored killing off his blonde leading ladies and Habs management loves murdering defensive coaches. ‘ To Catch a Thief ‘ must be  Montreal`s Hitchcock movie of choice. Every goaltender around the league ‘ steals’ two points from them. Unfortunately , the Canadiens do not have Grace Kelly to console them and Cary Grant has passed to the studio in the sky.  Sadly, Mr. Grant cannot take to the ice and score.

Here a Sniper – there a sniper …

Mike Cammalleri arrived in town on one knee as a sniper. A goal scorer. Ditto for Brian Gionta and recently,Erik Cole. Entering their third seasons with the Habs – Gionta and Cammalleri ‘s productivity is heading downhill faster than Sonny Bono. Be sure , Cole’s output will be felled by a defensive tree and Cammalleri will start putting two knees down in the form of prayer. One can only hope that God is a Montreal Canadien fan as he listens to Cammalleri`s plea for goal-scoring help.

There is so much emphasis on defense in Montreal , the players play scared. Afraid of making a ‘ faux pas ‘ in their zone. Scared silly of being too creative in the offensive zone for fear of getting caught and instilling the wrath of the Elfin Martin. Is this Jacques fault ? Not much more than Carbonneau , Julien , Vigneault and Therrien`s before. The sickness comes from above and with each passing President or owner – the organization with twenty-four Cup rings preaches defense. It is what won them many championships and that is the `history` they are sticking with. Through merchandising thick and winless thin. It does not matter if Jacques Martin and his team `never get a dinner`!

This team earns more money than Brian Mulroney on a good day. They are fast becoming the Toronto Maple Leafs (everyone started to make fun of the Leafs when they had gone eighteen years without a Cup ). Every season there are highs and lows. When the team wins – they are worthy of the banners that fly above them . When they lose – Oleg Petrov is the last great skater to sport the colors and logo of the famous Club de Hockey. Whatever the outcome – the team seldom scores more than three goals and perennially allows  two. For three seasons or more – Doug Harvey`s former squad plays the same hockey game . Over and over …

Ninety percent of the time – it’s like hitting your head against a board. It’s starting to be painful ! 

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See what Kevin has to say at Habs – Eye on the Prize.

Top Ten Places to Send Scott Gomez


As everyone knows – Scott Gomez is a very bad man. At the very least – a bad hockey-playing man. What to do with the guy …?

A question that has pundits from Alaska to Trois Rivieres shaking their heads.

Here are the TOP TEN PLACES TO SEND SCOTT GOMEZ

Gomez in better days ...

10. Tied to the back of any vehicle that travels over 5.2 km/ hr.

9. A Sea Monkey Aquarium – Scott would fit right in as he paddles the perimeter.

8. The New York Islanders  – Noone would notice that he plays and never scores !

7. Libya – The population are already missing a guy who can’t stand still and is hated by everyone.

6. Guy Lafleur’s hair-weaving clinic – With hair , the Alaskan can hide.

5. L’Anti-chambre – They need guys who never accomplished anything to teach us all the game of hockey.

4. Walt Disney World – One of the pirates in the Pirates of the Caribbean ride is broken.

3. Apple – The company needs a sickly , bald man to replace the other sickly, bald man.

2. A Pychiatrist – ( No explanation required.)

and the number one place to send Scott Gomez ?

1. Bob Gainey’s house !

Keene Sweepings


Prostitution 101

I do not have a soapbox and I am not funny looking . I also know there is twelve in a dozen and no matter how much money is tossed my way – I will not become a whore to the corporate world.

I do own a broom and that enables me the power to clean up the nonsense that flows through the mouths of the so-called sports enthusiasts in the city of Montreal.

Mike Boone wrote a great column in the Gazette the other day. The subject matter was truthful and I must agree with the aged writer. Mr. Boone questioned the integrity of the talking heads on Hockey Night in Canada. Comparing the broadcasters that give us their hockey opinions on Saturday night to the glory days of the show in the 70’s and 80′ s. Boone cited the difference between current suits –  P.J Stock , Mike Milbury et al to the Hockey Night alumni such as Dave Hodge , Brian McFarlane and Howie Meeker. I agree with Mr. Boone’s insights. He is right on with his evaluation of the disintegration of what was once – a national treasure in Canada.

Is Madden Available ?

One of the points that Mr. Boone utilized to send a knock -out punch in the form of reality was to point out the National Football League has many former Hall of Fame players and coaches as employees in their broadcasting team.

The NFL has Troy Aikman. The NHL ? Glen Healy. Monday Night Football ( the pigskin version of Hockey Night in Canada ) gives us Terry Bradshaw. Hockey gives us P.J Stock. As Boone pointed out – none of the people on Hockey Night in Canada have won anything or were they particularly good at what they did in the first place. Are hockey players that hard up for employment that the CBC feels sorry enough for them to give them jobs ? Are there qualified players and coaches out there that would do the job yet are not in dire straits ? Something tells me it is a little of both …

In between winning Stanley Cups – Scotty Bowman was once part of Hockey Night in

Respect

Canada.It did not matter what role Bowman held on the show. If he was doing play-by-play or filling the water bottles , people listened to what he had to say because he was …well , Scotty Bowman. The former Red Wings , Penguins , Sabres and Canadiens coach was a winner and he hung around with many winners. There is a huge difference listening to him describe a play than P.J Stock. Bowman was the king and Stock was the joker’s water boy. Scotty Bowman was John Wayne and Mike Milbury was the guy who swept up after the Duke’s horse.

Sadly – the ineptness of hiring ‘losers ‘ is not kept soley in the hands of Hockey Night in Canada. It appears to be an epidemic that runs rampant through hockey circles especially in Quebec.

On Habs’ game nights – I always choose to watch the telecasts on RDS. The french language station is far superior in it’s play-by-play than the other options. Forget CBC for the above reasons and TSN would be fine if the Toronto Maple Leafs happened to be my team. RDS gives a slight bias toward the Canadiens yet they are fair in their judgment of the team and it’s players during the coarse of a game. Once the game is over – my favoritism toward the French station ends. Like it’s English counterpart , the CBC , RDS ‘s post -game staff consist of hockey’s version of the Three Stooges.

Michel Bergeron ( the former coach of the Nordiques and Rangers ) never won a thing. Benoit Brunet did win a cup yet like an eighteen year old being seduced by a housewife , Brunet was ‘ lucky to be there ‘. The rest of the cast revolve with open doors as former French-Quebec players walk in looking for a job. Where is Mario Lemieux ? What about Jacques Lemaire …? I hear he is free. RDS is subject to the simple fact that successful hockey players remain successful in life and they do not need to argue hockey three times a week. CBC is in the same leaky boat. What would Milbury be doing if not for his gig on Hockey Night ? Presumably making bad trades with his hockey card collection. What about P.J Stock ? What on earth could a fringe fourth -line player that cheers for the Boston Bruins be doing for a living ? Dressing as a Bruins’ mascot on Battle of the Blades ?

Brown Nosers

Stock - Qualified ?

In the world of broadcasting , like the rest of the corporate world , brown nosing gets people places where they do not belong. Look around . On radio , in print and on-air , the media landscape is littered with idiotas. Aves that are outcasts. Flying reptiles who land wherever they can and dispel their limited knowledge and carnal insight to the masses. Sometimes they get lucky and hit the mark with their droppings. Most of the time – they come across as the out-of-touch people they are. Their followers flock and defend them because ‘ sheep ‘ cannot think for themselves.

If they could , they would come to a quick conclusion that  ‘ thirteen -to-a-dozen ‘ is all smoke and mirrors and what lies behind is pretty ugly and not cheap. Pathetic sycophants grasping for straws with enough knowledge to fool the masses but not the Masters.

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* Any resemblance to a person(s) living or dead is pure coincidental.

* No animals or broadcasters were used or harmed during the filming of this story.

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Habs

Jacques Martin’s system worked perfectly against the Senators , Bruins and Flyers. Like last season – the players get bored every once in a while and rebel against it. The result ? A loss to the Rangers last Saturday. Recap

The exciting Oilers are in town tonight and will give the people spending 250 bucks a bang for their buck. If Price is on the Habs have a chance – if not , lookout !

Scott Gomez is practicing with his mates . Why should all the kids fighting for a job with the Habs take a back seat to Gomez ? He is finished and should be sent away.

See what Knuckles has to say.

Habs Eye on the Prize

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