Habs Should Give Up


What was the biggest error the Montreal Canadiens committed in the past fifteen – odd seasons ?

Was it letting Rejean Houle and Mario Tremblay run the show ? Perhaps it was exchanging their captain and future hall of famer Chris Chelios to Chicago for Denis Savard …? No – wait a second … The biggest error was letting Patrick Roy go to Colorado for Martin Rucinsky, an overweight Russian and a scrawny netminder. If you answered yes to any of these choices – it proves you sane yet also very wrong.

The biggest mistake the Montreal team has made is competing each and every  year .

What is that you say ? Is that not what they are supposed to be doing …?

Yes and no.

By staying near or above the play-off line – the team has consistently drafted in the middle of the pack. Players with names such as Macmillan , Fortier and Nattinen will come , not conquer and skate on to other leagues or teams.Names like Steve Quailer , Avtsin and Terry French will be known only to their mothers as special people with special qualities. Who is Peter Sullivan …? No clue …? Exactly ! If the Montreal Canadiens want to return to respectability – they must finish dead last in the conference. The way things are going and the uncertainty surrounding the team in 2011-12 , why not this year …?

Clean Up

Le club is mired in 12th place with a coach whose future is as shaky as a boy on a first date . The players on the team will not commit to anything. Why should they ? Cunneyworth , by way of Gauthier and Molson , has already been let go of a job that he has just begun. Any skater on the Habs will look at the situation and decide ‘ what is the point ‘ ? ” If I skate this way or buy into this system – the new coach will change things once again.” The player will tell two friends and so on … and so on … Randy Cunneyworth may have polite players saying yes sir – no sir to his face yet behind their helmets , they are treating the situation as it is. A big joke.

Gauthier should be relieved of his duties as soon as possible. The new guy , hopefully someone like Serge Savard ( who not only knows the game yet the business side of things)  – can clean up Gauthier’s mess and commence ruining the team as competitors for one season.

Meet the new puppet ... same as the old puppet ?

The new GM should …;

  • Trade Kostisyn right away while he has good trade value.
  • Demote Gomez to Hamilton and free up cap space.
  • Trade the extra baggage such as Weber and Campoli – two players who are a dime a dozen in this league and the minors.
  • Hire a coach who has the best credentials. Throw away the French B.S and ensure this team is coached with passion and integrity. If Fozzie Bear is the best muppet for the job … so be it !
  • Rid the team of its nostalgia. Forget the torch at the beginning of games. That card has been played and it did not have the proper effect. It makes older fans sad and newer ones content to cheer on has – beens. The mentality among younger fans is growing sadder by the game.
  • Retire the long overdue numbers of Lemaire ( 25) and Lapointe ( 5). How can an organization be taken serious when it retires the number of a player ( 33 ) who made the team look bad before it honors two of its cornerstones of Stanley Cup glory.
  • Pass some sort of law that limits the French press to team access and coverage. The francophone media would be arrested as stalkers in real life. There is no way players such as Giroux, Stamkos or Crosby will ever come and aid our team to stardom. Any person in their right mind , wants to work hard and go home – leaving their problems at the office.

Next Year

The season would commence with a first round number one or two pick under the team’s jock strap. Unless the scouts pull a Wickenheiser – the player will be a young foundation to a team that is littered with a balance of young and old. The Habs of next year would ideally have P.K Subban, Josh Gorges and Carey Price locked into long-term deals. The cancer formerly known as Gomez will be skating elsewhere and nowhere near the Bell center. A trade with Calgary involving Kostistyn and Iginla would be ideal for both clubs. Andrei would mark 40 goals in the wild west while Iginla would be an ideal candidate to play with Erik Cole. Two veterans on a team filled with youth.

The opening day roster could be ;

Subban , Diaz , Emelin , Gorges , Kaberle, Tinordi and hopefully Markov on defence.

The forwards would be ;

Cole , Iginla, Gionta , Plekanec, Pacioretty, Cammalleri , Desharnais, Eller, Moen , Leblanc and two gritty guys we received for Campoli and Weber. Mathieu Darche is finished and Ryan White may never be the same.

If the team is smart  – they would best be suited to trade for Martin Brodeur. The record-setting goalie is in the twi–light of a glorious career and giving his support and knowledge to Carey Price will benefit the team for years to come. It would also take the workload off of Price and give Martin a boost to finish his career in front of his hometown fans.

With a little  luck – this team may finish 16th again …

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Top Ten Signs the Montreal Canadiens are in Florida


It  is – 18 Celsius in Montreal …

Le Club de Hockey Canadien are no dummies. They have taken the first flight out of town to the sunny skies of Florida. How can a beer-guzzling , Jean Beliveau-lovin’  , Gaston Gingras – lunchbox toting fan know for sure their beloved team is there …?

Here are the top ten signs the Montreal Canadiens are in Florida …

10. Half the team mistaken for characters at Disney’s ‘ It’s a small world ‘ attraction.

9. Mathieu Darche and David Desharnais’ Speedos are suddenly ‘ in fashion ‘.

8. Hal Gill recruited immediately as a member of  the  men’s volleyball beach squad.

7. Team greeted by former coach Jacques Martin in his new role … front desk clerk at the Holiday Inn !

6. Much to Eller’s dismay – plus 500 sun block  ‘  not quite ready ‘  for the general public .

5. Guy Boucher making extra dough by giving Randy Cunneyworth french lessons on the side …

4. Weber and Diaz making a fortune betting on Jai-alai !

3. No matter how hard he tries – Peter Budaj just cannot shake the sand out of his mask !

2. Emelin ecstatic with the abundance of orange juice …!

and the number one sign the Canadiens are in Florida …?

1. Carey Price applying layers of  ‘ dark ‘ tanning oil to P.K Subban’s shoulders and chest !

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The Ghost Owes Everyone a Solatium


The Montreal Canadiens are in twelfth place in the Eastern conference . Maurice Richard is closer to playing a game with the club than Andrei Markov and the team’s new uni-lingual coach presumably cannot french kiss .

That is the good news …

Pierre Gauthier has taken a solid core from three seasons ago and bit by bit – dismantled it to a inferior version of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Let us take a look at what he has done and how he has left the team in disarray…

  • The team that came within four victories of advancing to the Stanley Cup final boasted a solid defence. Roman Hamrlik and Jaroslav Spacek providing veteran cornerstones to a troupe that included Gorges, Subban and Hal Gill. By dismissing the two veterans – Gauthier misplaced a calming influence. Hamrlik and Spacek had almost forty years of experience bewteen them. Been there – done that is the phrase that comes to mind. The duo did not panic when the defensive walls started leaking and sadly Pierre did not take this into account in the big picture. Markov on the sidelines , in the Ghosts’ defense – left Gill and to a lesser extent, Josh Gorges , as the veterans. Gill has ‘ been there – done that ‘  yet Gorges is in the middle of  ‘ doing it ‘ .
  • Didn’ t Gauthier consult with a doctor … ? Not a physician – a pychiatrist ? Common sense dictates if a player has had two major knee surgeries, there is a posibilty the player and / or  knee will not respond to treatment. This is the case with Monsieur Markov. There is no way Gauthier and the Habs should have toyed with the idea of letting Markov skate with another club. After all , it was not the Russian’s fault his knee became an unwilling victim in Bettman’s league. Markov also deserved another chance with the team due to his loyalty and service. A one year deal would have been suffice. Once the season was completed and Markov’s Колено stood the test of Vryemya – only then should Gauthier considered a long term deal.
  • There was a player that added grit two seasons ago. He was one of the Canadiens best players when they upset Washington and Pittsburgh during the 2009 – 10 playoffs. His name was Dominic Moore. As a reward for his outstanding play – Mr. Ghost sent him to the beaches in Tampa. Money , as in the case of Hamrlik – not that big of an issue. Suddenly there was a void in a certain role on the club so Gauthier fills it admirable with Jeff Halpern. Halpern was no Moore yet was also a determined skater with experience. Last season ends and Gauthier once ” Moore ‘ decides that a player like Halpern is expendable. This season – the team is lacking in the Dominic – Halpern area.
  • Alex Auld came to Montreal last year and was a very good boy. He did not complain. He played fantastic once a month and all indications glowed with a Price – Auld friendship. On and off the ice. What does the ‘ Goat ‘ do …? Gives Auld his passport to Ottawa and signs Peter Budaj to a two year deal. Budaj showed signs of aging prematurely  in Colorado and for 1.1 million a season – Auld could have been had for the same or less amount of money. Gauthier knew what he had with Auld. He did not know how Budaj would play nor if the chemistry between him and Price would co-exist peacefully. Why rock the boat Pierre …?

Martin No Angel

Former coach Martin has a great dfensive mind. The Habs allowed just over two goals a game under the Elfin’s tutelage.If Jumpin’ Jacques decided to watch former Hab Kovalev’s video – perhaps his team would have scored more than two a game also.  Sadly – Jacques opted instead to watch Lemaire’s bedtime stories. Martin’s game plan was supposed to put opposing team’s to sleep. Most games it would yet for two periods at a time. When the oppostion awoke , down by a goal to start the third period – it was Martin’s squad that commenced sleepwalking.

The fans who heep praise on Martin for his ability to get the Canadiens once step away from the finals – have selective memory. In the series against Washington and Pittsburgh , the Habs were so badly outshot – the technicians at Le Centre Bell had to replace the boards behind Halak’s net. If Jaroslav had not stood on his red, white and blue mask – Martin’s troupe would have been dismissed in the ‘ foist ‘ round. Jacques is on the beach somewhere , collecting his money. Mr. Martin should use some of it to take courses on how to coach in the ‘ new ‘ NHL. If not – as his record dictates from Florida and Montreal, eighth place does not look good on a resume .

Cunneyworth Bandwagon

One win ! Place those Hab flags back on your cars and wake the children … ! There is gonna be a parade !

The ‘ usual ‘  route has been altered.

It will not run it’s course through any streets bearing a french name. Rue Ste. Catherine …? As Robert DeNiro  would say … fahget  ’bout it ! The patrons of blvd Rene Levesque will have to walk to ave. Green or Atwater street  to watch Cunneyworth and his band of MerryMen tote the Stanley Cup. Yes sir – La Coupe s’en vien a Montreal en anglais ! English muffins have  replaced poutine as the provincial food of choice.

No need for a solatium to the French-Quebecers !

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Eye on the Prize , The Hockey Writers and Knuckles Nilan will tell you what you need to know.,.

Twelve Days of Christmas – Humbug !


 The first day after Christmas
My true love and I had a fight
And so I chopped the pear tree down
And burnt it, just for spite
Then with a single cartridge
I shot that blasted partridge
My true love, my true love,
my true love gave to me.
The second day after Christmas
I pulled on the old rubber gloves
And very gently wrung the necks
Of both the turtle doves
My true love, my true love,
my true love gave to me.

 

Les Canadiens are off until Tuesday and so am I …
Too bad Gauthier is not off – FOR THE REST OF HIS LIFE …!
 

Top Ten Ways to Confuse Santa


Les Canadiens de Montreal are off work . Santa Claus is not …

Want to take out your frustrations over the play of the Habs on someone ? Santa is the prime target – after all, you won’t see him for at least a year ..

Here now are the Top Ten Ways to Confuse Santa …

10. Instead of milk and cookies, leave him a salad, and a note explaining that you think he could stand to lose a few pounds.

9. While he’s in the house, go find his sleigh and write him a speeding ticket.

8. Leave him a note, explaining that you’ve gone away for the holidays. Ask if he would mind watering your plants.

7. While he’s in the house, replace all his reindeer with exact replicas. Then wait and see what happens when he tries to get them to fly.

6. Keep an angry bull in your living room. If you think a bull goes crazy when he sees a little red cape, wait until he sees that big, red Santa suit!

5. Build an army of mean-looking snowmen on the roof, holding signs that say “We hate Christmas,” and “Go away Santa.”

4. Leave a note by the telephone, telling Santa that Mrs. Claus called and wanted to remind him to pick up some milk and a loaf of bread on his way home.

3. Throw a surprise party for Santa when he comes down the chimney. Refuse to let him leave until the strippers arrive.

2. While he’s in the house, find the sleigh and sit in it. As soon as he comes back and sees you, tell him that he shouldn’t have missed that last payment, and take off.

and the number one way to confuse Santa …?

Leave a plate filled with cookies and a glass of milk out, with a note that says, “For The Tooth Fairy. ..

Merry Christmas everyone … !

Habs Eye on the Prize , The Hockey Writers and Knuckles Nilan

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Merry Christmas to Mike Matthews


I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah and to thank you for your support . In the past month – it is amazing just how many people, animals or things are reading the words  I write.

Each and every time I sit down at the keyboard , my goals are simple …

  • Put a smile on someone’s face.
  • Attempt to send a proper message on fair play.
  • To improve my skills each time.

I believe I am accomplishing these things and the results are showing  in the numbers.

There is one person that believed in me one hundred percent and unfortunately he is no longer with us …

His name is Michael Matthews.

He was the father of two of my friends when I was a young man starting out in high school. I got to know him and his family very well when I was twelve years old. My Mother had cancer and was operated on and concurrently spent a few weeks in the hospital. My father had already passed away and as you can imagine – the thought of my Mom leaving this earth  , really put a scare into me …

Mike Matthews along with his wife June – brought me into their home and cared for my well being during this difficult time . Along with their children Mike Jr, Quentin , Elissia and Jennifer – the family made me feel welcome.

Years passed and circumstances led to me not seeing this family for almost 20 years.

I ran into the boys and Mike Sr a few years ago – Mike ( the Father ) asked me how my writing was going. I told him that aside from a few freelance jobs – it was not going …

After all the years had passed – Mike Sr scolded me for not doing something that he believed in

In the pursuing weeks – through endless emails , Mike encouraged and provoked me to start writing once more. He is the reason that I am doing this Canadiens blog and hopefully will be the reason that this site , along with other ventures of the literary nature succeed.

Mike Sr passed away …

Thank you Mike and Merry Christmas to the Matthews family !

This time of year is difficult for many families that have lost a loved one – please take solace in the fact that your husband and father inspired an otherwise hack to bigger and better things …

Love Rick

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Merry Christmas to Kevin and the boys at Habs Eye on the Prize, Bruce Hollindrake at the Hockey Writers and a special Holiday greeting to Chris Nilan – keep up the great work Knuckles and glad to have you back where you belong.

Gift a gift that keeps on giving … The Max Pacioretty Foundation

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A Christmas Gift


The boy was just doing his job …

Delivering newspapers through sleet , snow and whatever Mother Nature tossed his way.

The weather was a minor inconvenience to the money that filled his pockets. It had been two years since his Dad passed away and his job helped to keep his mind off his pain. It also eased the monetary burden from his Mom. His task allowing the fifty – two year old woman more freedom to pay bills and buy food. That way – all of his earnings could provide the cool clothes and kid stuff that would allow him to keep up with his friends.

The boy and his Mom resided in an affluent community .It was not easy keeping up with a two – parent working neighbor. Kids could be cruel and as his Mom discovered –  adults could be just as cruel or more so.

The year was 1991.

David had started delivering print to the doors in his neighborhood shortly after the death of his Dad. On occasion – the job was tedious.Especially those cold wintery dawns when the wind would cut through him like a knife. Still, each morning without pause, the soon- to – be teenager carried out his duties with dignity. Banking whatever money that was available for a car when the law allowed.

Along the way , certain things happened which made his early morning
tasks seem worthwhile. One of those things was having a professional
hockey player as a client. Not just any hockey player. David had the good fortune to be able to place a paper on the porch of a Montreal Canadien. A particular player who was one of the hardest working skaters in the Habs modern era.

Brian Skrudland of Peace River, Alberta

A Hero

Skrudland was one of the lucky ones.One of a handful of players that earn something quickly.A prize that eludes the majority of professional
hockey players for eternity. The Stanley Cup

Skrudland arrived in the NHL in time for the 1985-86 season. Along with Mike McPhee – the duo evolved into a latter-day Doug Risebrough and Mario Tremblay. A pair of water bugs who – not unlike the 70’s version of themselves, provided grit and determination with each and every shift. Skrudland and McPhee were determining factors in the Habs’ unlikely 1986 Stanley Cup run. The duo hooking up to score the game winning goal in game two of the finals. Skrudland netting the winner just nine seconds into overtime on a nifty pass from McPhee. The two – on – one providing lore for many Montreal fans for years to come. David was seven when Skrudland sent the puck into NHL history. Age has no boundaries when heroes are formed …

David was delighted to discover that number thirty – nine ‘s home was one of his destinations. It seemed imperative for him to stop by and introduce himself. He was the liaison between Skrudland and the world ‘s events. In doing so – David was able to boast of a conversation and an autograph to his envious classmates.A gesture by the Canadien forward that somehow lifted the weight off David’s delivery bag. One small step for Skrudland evolving into giant leaps for David as he made his rounds through the neighborhood…

In the course of the following year and a half , David was able to carry out several conversations with the blonde – haired , six – foot Skrudland. The Habs’ defeat at the gloves of the Calgary Flames in the 1989 finals – the thorn in their normally rosy conversations.

One day – near the start of the 1992- 93 season, Skrudland informed David that he would get all of his team mates to sign a stick for him. A Christmas present for David’s work ethic and for being an all – around good kid. David thanked him and deemed the gesture unnecessary. Skrudland had, after – all, been very generous every Christmas and had even given tickets to a game. The fourteen year old was not able to alter the Hab forward’s thinking.

David did not mind …

A Boy ‘s Life

The young man continued delivering papers to Skrudland and never spoke of the signed stick. He figured when the Habs’ winger got around to it – the wooden piece would be delivered to his waiting arms. The season played through Christmas with the year ending in Calgary on New Year‘s Eve – a tradition between the two teams that somehow has lost it’s way as the years have passed.

On January 28, 1993 – David awoke to shocking news. His hero, one of the men responsible for bringing the Stanley Cup ‘home’ – was traded.

Brian Skrudland was dealt to the very team that he helped defeat for hockey’s most coveted prize. The thirty year old forward was sent to the Calgary Flames for a former fifty goal scorer whose fortunes had fallen on hard times. Skrudland himself had fallen out of favour with Canadiens management so the move that delivered Gary Leeman to Montreal was not a total shock. To David it was … His hero and customer left town to join his new team.

In a boy’s travels – life is fast. School, peer pressure and the normal growing pains of evolving from boy to man can make things appear skewed. Just the realization of puberty and the mixed hormonal messages alone can alter everyday perspective. To David – one of his favourite hockey players exchanging jerseys was but one of many trials and tribulations along the bumpy road of adolescence.

1992 – 93 Season

The Montreal Canadiens finished the season behind their division rivals – the Quebec Nordiques. The two teams met in the first round of the play-offs with the Habs’  Eastern neighbors favored to win. Down two games after a pair of Nordique victories on home ice – les Canadiens
limped into Montreal. Hockey sticks between their legs. In David’s mind – this would not be happening if  Skrudland were on the team . Gary Leeman , after a dismal start with his new club – discovered his game and was one of the Habs best players in the final section of the regular schedule. This did not ease David’s pain of losing another male role model in his life.

The Canadiens were victorious in their next four games and commenced a winning streak dotted with improbable exclamation points. A winning streak with ten overtime wins that inevitably led them to their twenty-fourth ( and final) Stanley Cup championship. The team’s victory eased David’s aches as Patrick Roy evolved into a new – found hero.

David never forgot Skrudland . He  pursued  Brian’s career as it
passed through Florida and  New York –  eventually landing in Dallas. It was during Skrudland ‘ s first season in Texas ( 1997 ) , David learned what integrity was all about.

‘Tis the season …

It was a few days before Christmas and David returned home to discover a note in his mailbox. It was a message from UPS instructing him to
pick up a package the delivery company was unable to leave due to the absence of him or his Mom at his home.

Not expecting anything – David’s mind wandered as he drove to the depot.All of his relatives lived close by so a Christmas present seemed unlikely in the form of a UPS package.  Leaving his car – the young man entered the building and gave the pleasant young woman
behind the counter his note. The dark- haired beauty took his memo and disappeared to another room leaving David alone with his thoughts.

Minutes later, the girl appeared with a package wrapped in brown paper. A package that could be only one thing. No wrapping on this planet could mask the contents of David’s ‘ gift’. David signed a paper to acknowledge the reception of the tan – colored item. He thanked the woman and wished her Merry Christmas. In the parking lot – he noticed there was an envelope attached to the long article. Someone had scribbled ‘ To David ‘ on the front. Placing the package against his car – David ripped open the envelope as a young kid would open a present on Christmas morning.

Inside was a card with a depiction of Santa Claus on the cover. He opened it and inside were a few words penned in ink. Words that made the hair on David’s body stand to attention …

” To David – sorry it took so long to get you the hockey stick . It was hard tracking down all of the guys I played with in Montreal. I hope you have a nice Christmas !”

Sincerely,

Brian Skrudland.

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Check out The Hockey Writers for league information , Eye on the Prize for Habs’ stuff and Knuckles Nilan for entertaining thoughts from a former Canadien de Montreal …

 

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Le Forum de Montreal – Turning French


The writing is on the wall …

Not one to be set apart from the masses, this site from now on will be in French only.

Fifty percent of Quebecers speak French at home. Twenty – five percent are English while various other languages make up the remaining twenty – five. Given this cultural fact – I wish to keep the higher percentage satisfied. Unlike the Montreal Canadiens – I am aware that language takes front seat over quality.

The following story will give an appropriate example of what my readers can now come to expect .

Enjoy !

Bruins 3 Habs 2

Les Canadiens duh Montreal were frappe by la Bruins duh Boston la coir qui est befor le coir tonight.

Les jourers de Boston ave no problems avec notres jourers. Ils frappe more and ils score more que us. Cest la second marde de Cunnneyworth en two matches. Ca nest pas tres good pour le couch anglais.

P.K Subban , le big noir guy sur les Habitants a fait pouppu et
leases la puck pour le bruins guy. Le Bruins guy paase a un autre
Bruins guy and ce guy la a marke un butt. Le big noir est mixe – up and il est tres mad after le match.Son couch est tres mad aussi !

La next game pour la gang de Cunneyworth est tomorrow soirée contra
les Blackhawks of Chicago. Ca netait pas facility pour les Habs.

Christmas vienna quick pour les garçons and touted les points are
speciale.

Bonnie chance les guys !

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Top Ten Reasons why Jacques Martin was Fired


You cannot fire twenty-five players.

Someone must take the fall and in the case of the Montreal Canadiens – the coach was the victim.

Jumpin’Jacques was the man who lost his job. Why …?

His team’s record was one reason yet there were other factors involved. No one gets the axe solely because of a losing record …

Here now are the top ten reasons Jacques Martin was fired !

10. Kept giggling when he found out Markov was still injured.

9. He kept referring to GM Gauthier as ‘Bob’s little buddy!’

8. After a loss , players were invited to his place for a massage.

7. When a player asked which line he was on … Martin responded by
shouting ‘A chorus line ‘! At which point he grabbed the player and danced to Liza Minnelli tunes …

6. Instead of video reviews of games – Martin hooked up his
Playstation 3 and ‘ blasted the commies to hell’ in his Call of Duty video game.

5. Insisted on calling Brian Gionta ‘My little pony’ !

4. He would halt practice to use his phone-a-friend option.

3. Nobody was allowed to use pylons until he completed his ‘leaning

tower of Pisa …’

2. Started the day by entering the dressing room and yelling ;” I love

the smell of Napalm in the morning !”

and the number one reason Martin was fired …?

1.Porn on his laptop …

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All We Are Saying … Is Give Roy a Chance


IF John Lennon were alive and a Habs fan , his next song should be titled ‘Do the right thing ‘.

Randy Cunneyworth has been placed into the hot seat as the new coach of this storied franchise and there cannot be a worse Christmas present for the man from Etobicoke,Ontario. The non – francophone has been inserted as a patsy to ease the pressure off Patrick Roy.There is no place in Montreal for an anglophone coach unless the man’s name happens to be Dick Irvin Sr.

The language that a coach speaks has no place when choosing the best man for the job. In a league where a Russian (Ovechkin) is the second face of hockey – it is time for the French media in Quebec to
understand their roles in ruining what was once ,a proud franchise.The French press and many of the so – called Francophone fans have in many ways,brought the team to it’s knees and turned away
their own in the process.

Let’s look at some of the press’ behavior – shall we ?

  •  Saku Koivu was under pressure to speak French just because he was the only player with leadership skills for ten seasons. The former Captain was also hounded by photographers who risked blinding Koivu for life by taking his picture after a serious eye injury.The same photographers would never had done so to Jean Beliveau.
  •  Vincent Lecavalier and Daniele Briere , two of hockey’s brightest and Francophone stars , shunned the occasion to return home and take the place next to Richard,Beliveau and Lafleur.Instead – opting for peace of mind outside of the rink.

The Wrong Man

Cunneyworth is the wrong man for the job .

Not because he does not know a poutine from poultry. Not because he is a bad coach. He is the wrong man because the Montreal Canadiens are void of heart and passion. Two elements that have been sadly missing since Pat Burns left Claude Lemieux writhing in bad-acting on Forum ice. Cunneyworth in all his U.S Marine appearing glory , simply cannot instill fear into the current day team.There is only one man who possesses the attitude, respect and passion that can inject life into a dormant franchise.

That man is Patrick Roy.

Enough is Enough

In life , sometimes things happen for a reason.

One of these obtuse events occurred in the mid – nineties when then goalie, Canadien All Star and unofficial captain St Patrick , did the unspeakable and spoke.

When he told then President Ronald Corey that he played his final game in a Habs jersey, what Patrick was really saying was something that everyone knew yet were afraid to admit. When Roy angrily gazed into Corey’s eyes , the two time Conn Smythe winner screamed ; ” You are destroying the Montreal Canadiens and I do not want any part of it !”

Roy ‘s passion won two Stanley Cups for Montreal and that passion was not about to stand by and watch his beloved Canadiens fall farther into an abyss.If it were going to happen(which it did), better Roy’s heart was removed to another city.The pain of which was passed through Lafleur, Beliveau and Richard. Roy was and continues to be the final cog in the torch-passing legacy.Not only did Montreal not supply someone for whom to pass the torch – they extinguished it along the way.

Imagine Scott Gomez or Mathieu Darche returning to the bench after a bad shift.Greeted by Roy’s red glare ?Whichever player receives the dreaded scorn cannot dismiss it a la Mike Keenan . No sir.The player will see the eyes of a winner and they will know it. Roy is exactly what they need and they are exactly what Roy needs.

A Challenge

Patrick Roy played and won championships with men. He witnessed the best and worse of the burning desires required to compete. Patrick’s earnings from those years were parlayed quickly into a championship with his Quebec Rempart team. His winning qualities oozing into the young pores that surrounded the St Foy native. Roy has always been one to rise to a challenge.In Quebec , there are no more challenges for Patrick. It is time for a new one.Behind the bench of the Montreal Canadiens.

Cunneyworth,Bob Hartley, Gaston Gingras or whatever poor soul is chosen to coach the Habs will be under a magnifying glass with the heat of the media and fans scorching their every move.

One man can step in and carry the support of the majority of the population.One man can step in and not to have worry about anything except winning.

His name is Patrick Roy. He will do the right thing.

He will win .. !

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Prices Valid Until February 28

Jacques Martin Fired – Thank You Santa


Dear Santa ,

I know that you are extremely busy at this time of the season making presents for everyone. Just to know that you took time out to make Daddy happy and have Jacques Martin fired is the best present in the world for Owen and me.

Thank you very , very much and God bless us everyone !

Sincerely ,

Francesca and Owen

P.s There are eight days left before Christmas – any chance of firing Gauthier too … ?

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Randy Cunneyworth will be head coach until Patrick Roy ties up odds and ends. Larry Carriere will be the assistant until Roy et al decide which course to take …
The Habs did not announce this yet it’ s all smoke and mirrors isn’t it ?

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If you require great prices on the usually over – priced Ink Cartridges ;
call   Kerry Kenemy at Pro ink 514 695 4370

Coupon valid until February 28 2012

Yes Francesca – There is a Santa Claus


Dear Santa ,

I am eleven years old.

I have pictures of me when I was a baby wearing a Montreal Canadiens sweater. I obviously do not remember because I was too young. My Dad would always buy me a Canadiens’ sweater and put me on his knee while watching the games on television. He did the same with my Brother when he was born.

As we got older and could understand – my Daddy would tell us of all the great players that he grew up watching that wore a red , white and blue sweater.Guy Lafleur and Ken Dryden were his heroes. He would tell us how Guy Lafleur would electrify the people each and very time he touched the puck. He told us that the Canadiens back then were built on speed. How they made hockey beautiful to watch. My dad always said that it was as if the ice was a canvas and the players would turn it into a beautiful piece of art.

My Dad said that the team changed one day. They hired some guy named Houle to run the team and another ex – player to coach. My Dad says that those two changes set the Montreal Canadiens back ten years. It is only recently that they have begun to draft better and put a complete team on the ice once again.

My Daddy says the current team is filled with so much talent and he gets mad because the coach does not let them play like they can.

Please Santa , can you make my Dad happy and make sure the Montreal Canadiens fire Jacques Martin . We know that he misses us and this would cheer him up .

Thank you.

Sincerely ,

Francesca and Owen Keene

p.s Please don’t get mad at Daddy for posting your Xmas notes ** …

** Santa Claus is making a list and czeching it twice – Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Check out The Hockey Writers for news around the NHL ….

If you need writing services , graphic design or you want to advertise on my site – please feel free to contact me !

For all your computer needs … Greg Senneville at  PC-TECK  in the Pointe Claire Plaza  will be glad  to help – 514 505 4040 .

Santa Claus is Making a List and Czeching it Twice – Part Three


Desharnais was caught !

Previous to his snowbank – driven toss , the Habs’ diminutive french-guy was able to gather the remainder of the fat-man’s notes …

The Goaltenders

Carey Price

Changes masks more often than coach Martin changes lines / Bad

Nobody body-checks a calf like he does / Bad ( call PETA )

Gives ‘ Movember ‘ a very bad name  / Bad

Misses one of eight P.K low fives by going high / Bad

Will not share Molson Cup with team-mates / Bad

Gift decision – An autographed copy of ‘ How to make friends and influence people ‘ by Jaroslav Halak.

Peter Budaj

Earns 1,100 ,00 a game / Good ( for him ).

Can’t pronounce his own last name / Bad

Owns bumper sticker saying ‘ I was Patrick Roy’s back-up ‘ / Good

Misses skiing in Colorado / Bad

Who … ??????

Gift decision – Andre ( Red Light ) Racicot’s phone number

Management

Pierre Gauthier

Laughter – a problem / Bad

Penchant for signing offensive defenceman and losing them / Bad

Friends with Jacques Martin / Bad

Signed petition to lower beer prices from $ 10.00 to $ 9.85  + tax / Good

Can’t seem to find his way out of Bob Gainey’s pocket / Bad

Gift decision – The game Risk

Jacques Martin

Laughter – a problem / Bad

Favourite hockey player of all time – Gilbert Dionne / Bad

Anger management non-issues / Bad

Sent slanderous note in off- season to Geoff Molson pretending to be Kirk Muller / Bad

System has never won a Stanley Cup / Bad

Gift decision – A photo-shoot to be Mr. April in my upcoming ‘ Elves and Ears  ‘ calendar.

The Rest of the Coaching Staff

Ha ! Monkeys can do their jobs … !

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There you have it ladies, gentlemen and Ted Bird  …

Another year and more headaches for Santa Claus as he perennially attempts to figure out the Montreal Canadiens !

Check out what Knuckles is up to …! Kevin and the boys always have something to say …

Hockey inside Out is filled with crazy Hab fans … ?!

Want to listen to great tunes and aid a race of people that were and are so wrongly treated … K103.7 FM is the place to be .

Want to advertise on my site … ? Contact me at keenerick@hotmail.com

Nine days to Christmas … be nice – not naughty !

God Bless Eddy Palchak !

Santa Claus is Making a List and Czeching it Twice – Part Two


Unfortunately – Brian Gionta was caught as an imposter and tossed into a snow bank outside Santa’s workshop. Fortunately , the Montreal Canadiens have an abundance of  ‘ elf-ish’ characters.

Le Forum de Montreal recruited David Desharnais and sent him to discover more of the fat-man’s notes …

Forwards

Mike Cammalleri

Mrs. Claus thinks he has a cute bum / Good

Appears to have a ‘ Diva ‘ mentality / Bad

Too many M’s and L’s in his name / bad

Can score from one knee / Good

Can’t score from one knee / Bad

Gift decision – A mirror

Erik Cole

Family name rhymes with coal / Bad

Fast and strong on the puck / Good

Has all the cheerleaders and their sister’ s phone numbers from time in Carolina / Very Good

Shares broken vertebrae tales openly with Max Pacioretty / Good

Has no chin / Bad

Gift decision – Rod Brind’ Amour as a line-mate

David Desharnais

Suspicions of imitating one of my elves / Bad

Even on top of Gionta’s shoulders – still cannot clean banners / Bad

Stand – in for Smurfs movie / Good

Able to skate between  Zdeno Chara’s legs / Excellent

Carrying the french-Canadian torch all by himself/ Good

Gift decision –  An autographed DVD copy of  Bon Cop , Bad Cop

Lars Eller

Pale / Bad

Has not hit coach Martin with stick / Bad

Learning Swiss language to banter with Diaz and Weber / ‘ A ‘  for effort

Still has not taken down Halak name plate from locker / Bad

Gets a point every thirty – six games / Not-so-good

Gift decision – An offensive-minded coach

Brian Gionta

Captain of the team / Good

Hardest working player game in and game out / Good

Friends with Scott Gomez / Very bad

Victim of ‘ keep away ‘ game with Hal Gill once a week / Bad

Nobody on team ‘ looks up ‘  to him / Bad

Gift decision – A two-week  ‘ sans Grinch ‘ paid vacation to Who –  ville.

Scott Gomez ( not enough coal in the world ).

Andrei Kostitsyn

Related to Sergei / Bad

Ties to Russian mob / Could go either way ( check life insurance policy ).

Nickname ( AK46 ) attached to assault weapon / Bad

Natural goal scorer when applies oneself / Good

Does not apply himself / Bad

Gift decision – A toupee

 Travis Moen

Appeared in episode of Corner Gas, Mrs Claus ‘ favourite show / Good

On pace to score 20 goals / Good

Looks like Mr. Ed the talking horse / Bad

Tough / Good

Corner Gas no longer a sitcom / Bad

Gift decision – DVD copy of Brent Butt ‘s new show ‘ Hiccups ‘ .

Max Pacioretty

Has recovered from broken vertebrae / Good

Did not use stanchion to avoid suspension when hitting Letang / Bad

Good looking girlfriend / Good

Second in scoring on the team  / Good

Wept openly upon learning of Spacek ‘s departure / Good

Gift decision – A copy of Montreal police report alleging  Chara assault charge ( signed by Chara ).

Tomas Plekanec

Missing H in name ( what’s up with these Czechs ????) / Bad

Nice goatee / Good

Position # 1 as  scorer on team / Good

Position # 1, 476 as scorer in the league / Bad

Along with Kaberle – now known as ‘ The Killer T ‘ s ‘ …  / Hmm-mm …

Gift decision – Consistent line-mates

Petteri Nokelainen

Sticks up for team mates / Good

Receives emails from Saku Koivu once a week / Good

Makes fun of Eller’s accent / Bad

Good face-off guy / Good

Will not shorten name to Pete / Bad

Gift decision – Teemu Selanne’ s recipe from the fountain of youth.

Stay tuned for more of Santa ‘s list ….

In the meantime – check out Knuckles , Habs Eye on the Prize and Hockey inside Out

For all your computer needs … Greg Senneville at  PC-TECK  in the Pointe Claire Plaza  will be glad  to help – 514 505 4040 .


Santa Claus is Making a List and Czeching it Twice – Part One


It is the time of year when Santa sits down, pulls out his keyboard and decides who has been naughty or nice. The players on the Montreal Canadiens are not exempt from his discrimination.

Who will recieve a new iPad and who will have a big lump of coal deposited in their red, white and blue stockings …?

Le Forum de Montreal has placed an undercover elf ( Brian Gionta) into Santa’s workshop and discovered the fat-man’s notes …

The Defence

P.K Subban

Mouths off to opponents / Bad

Is always smiling / Good

Gives away the puck sometimes / Bad

Gives low fives to Carey Price / Good

Enjoys listening to the Roots on iPad/ Good

Gift decision – A basketball contract

Hal Gill

Is very tall / Good

Is very wimpy/ Bad

Keeps P.K in line / Good

Once played for Toronto and Boston / Bad

Can clean banners at Bell Center without the use of a stool / Good

Gift decision – Gift certificate at Big Men-Tall Men- Stout Men Shop

Brian Gionta

Josh Gorges

Recovered from knee operation / Good

Is having career year point-wise / Good

Growing hair/ Good

A leader in the dressing room / Good

His parents could not spell Georges properly / Bad

Gift decision – The letter ‘ C ‘ on his sweater

Jaroslav Spacek

Tomas Kaberle

Played for Boston and Toronto / Bad

Missing ‘H’ in first name / Bad

A – 19 in Carolina / Bad

Knows cheerleaders from time in Carolina / Good

Gives Habs the zany Czech humor that Spacek had / Good

Gift decision – A heart from the Wizard of Oz

Alexei Yemelin Emelin

Can’t understand what Jacques Martin is saying / Good

Enjoys Vodka/ Bad

Name keeps changing/ Bad

Body-checks like a demon/ Good

Improving everyday / Good

Gift decision – A healthy Andrei Markov

Raphael Diaz

Chicks dig him/ Good

A good sense of the game/ Good

Scored first NHL goal/ Good

Keeps Weber happy with Swiss verbal bantering/ Good

Chicks dig him/ Good

Gift decision – A no trade clause with the New York Islanders ( see Streit, Mark).

Yannick Weber

Keeps Diaz happy with Swiss banter/ Good

Gives up the puck too often/ Bad

No relation to Yannick Noah/ Bad

If Campoli and Markov were healthy – would be in Hamilton/ Bad

Visited children’s hospital/ Good

Gift decision – Toblerone ( it was 3-D first ) !

Chris Campoli

Did not get decapitated by Ryan Malone/Good

Keeps things ‘ light’ in infirmary / Good

Knows the Ottawa Senators system very well/ Bad

Makes great spaghetti sauce/ Good

Never seen him play / Bad

Gift decision – An instructional  DVD by Eric Lindros titled ‘ Keep your head up and enjoy the game !’

Andrei Markov

**** Gets present by default for his years of service

Gift decision – Steve ( the six million dollar man)  Austin’s phone number …!

Stay tuned for more of Santa’s list …!


Top Ten Signs Montreal GM Gauthier is on the Ball


Hockey fans never see or hear from the man.

His nickname is ‘ the ghost ‘.

All things considered – the man is developing a bad reputation among Montreal hockey fans. However , under the seemingly bad moves – it has been discovered  the Habs’ boss is an astute hockey man.

Here are the Top Ten Reasons proving just that …

Habs - Up the Creek without a hockey stick ?

10. All of his cell phone contacts are filed by their family name alphabetically. Except one. Bob Gainey’s name is first and filed under ‘A’ for *sshole. In contrast – Gomez`name is conspiciously absent.

9. Unless the puppet strings break – under no circumstances will he come in contact with Randy Cunneyworth.

8. He has carefully constructed an organization filled with ex-Ottawa Senator personnel. The term ‘ close but no cigar’ his motto …

7. Has a talent for discovering offensive defenceman among teams that are struggling. No surprise that he signed Markov …

6. Gets dressed every morning – one sock at a time !

5. Most people appear gaunt when dealing with a lot of stress. Gauthier’s gauntness causing stress !

4. Jaroslav Spacek’s family uprooted just before Xmas adding the name ‘ Grinch ‘ to his many titles.

3. Hardly ever gets lost going to work at Le Centre Bell …

2. Each day – he delivers centennial memorabilia to every person who celebrates their 100th birthday in the province of Quebec. Gauthier has made two people very happy in the past three years – one of whom is still alive

and the number one sign Montreal GM Gauthier is on the ball …?

1. The Montreal Canadiens will complete the season !

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Check out Chris Nilan’s blog.

Habs Eye on the Prize is cool !

Hockey Inside Out will turn you … well, inside out !

Tic Toc Jacques …

Habs Trade Spacek for Kaberle … Covering Cancer with a Band-Aid


Angry Bird ?

Sometimes – an organization’s problems run so deep, everyone is running around trying to stick their fingers in the leaky holes. Problem is , the holes are too many and by scurrying about – the source of the leak is over-looked. That is the problem with the Montreal Canadiens.

They acquired an offensive defenceman to plug a leaky power-play and by doing so, management will improve the winning percentage of the ice hockey club. Special teams mean so much in this NHL, an increase of ten percent on the P. P almost guarantees a climb up a few rungs in the standings. The problem with the Habs – it has become an annual ritual. Last season , James Wizniewski was brought in to fill the skates of the departed Bergeron from the previous season. Bergeron and the Wiz were both brought in to replace a wonky Markov. Now – Tomas Kaberle will be asked to do the same thing. Great right …? Not so much. All Kaberle will do is ensure the team hits the eighth and final play-off spot. Thus guaranteeing the Habs the extra revenue required to sign Carey Price and P.K Subban in the future. The Canadiens will retain their two most popular players and continue on their way of becoming the New York Yankees of the 1970’s …

Tomas Kaberle replaces the aging Jaroslav Spacek. A Czech for a Czech. Defence for offence. A good deal if the Habs had not ridden themselves of Roman Hamrlik. Like Hamrlik – Spacek brought experience to the team and although his age ( 37) was starting to send him to the infirmary too often , the poise he brought to the ice and the dressing room is like when Peter Budaj is in goals – PRICELESS!

Kaberle

Kaberle has a suspect reputation. Playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs will do that for a career. However,  what follows Kaberle to Montreal is a trail of not-coming-up-big when it counted. Sure the 33 year-old rearguard has impressive numbers.He was the Andrei Markov of the Leafs for years. However, the defence man was dealt to the Bruins last season and was a non-factor on a Stanley Cup winning team. In his defence – he was sent to a team at season’s end, playing twenty-four regular season games. It is always difficult for a player to adjust to a new system and teammates. Yet there is a reason why he was not re-signed with Boston. Bruins’ management did not feel as if the money Kaberle warranted was worth it. In 25 play-off games last season, Tomas had 11 assists and was a+ 8. Respectable numbers on a Stanley Cup ride yet Kaberle was barely used during key situations and never fit in with the Bruins’ system. The 11 assists during the play-offs along with the one goal and eight assists he registered in the regular season are easy numbers for a player with his talent.

It is difficult to get a feel for what Kaberle has done in Carolina this season. It is a team that is struggling on and off the ice. Was Kaberle happy in Raleigh as he accumulated his nine points( all assists)? Is his -19  a reflection of his or his former team’s play ? A little of both as any couple with marital troubles will attest. If the heart is unhappy at home – work suffers. Habs fans can cross their sticks that Tomas will be happier in Montreal and that joy is reflected in his play.

Martin Must Go

Kaberle, Bergeron, the Wiz are all band-aids to an ailing Canadiens leaky ship. The amount of talent on this team would have won 6 – 0 last night against Vancouver. Jacques Martin and the Hab brain trust are sadly convinced that a lead requires protection.They are squandering wins and points at an alarming rate. Unleash the old and young guns alike … Let the Cammalleris and the Ellers do what they are paid to do. If P.K Subban will get the Habs an additional fifty goals by way of assists and goals yet making mistakes that may lead to a disc beyond Price once in a while – who cares? Coffey did that for years in Edmonton and if Glen Sather’s name is Googled – a few Stanley Cups appear.

That is the problem with the Montreal Canadiens.

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Check out what the heck everyone is saying …. Knuckles Nilan and  Hockey Inside Out

Sex, Lies and Hockey Tape – Part Four


What’s happening in Tampa …?

Golden boy Guy Boucher’s star is fading fast apparently. Is it because of the debacle that took place when the Flyers mocked Boucher’s trap and refused to move the puck or is Boucher suffering from a sophomore jinx ? Losers of their past five games – Tampa’s high-scoring stars are above only the lowly Islanders and Hurricanes in points. Over-payed and over-estimated Lecavalier is the worst captain since Stubing on the Love Boat. Stamkos and St Louis cannot carry the team on their backs and if Bergeron was not a lethal point-getter on the powerplay – where would Tampa be right now …

Jacques Martin was the GM and coach in Florida. The team , under his tutelage – hovered close to the .500 mark and were playing with the final eight spot in the Eastern division. Sound familiar …? The team started out well and Dale Tallon’s master plan is sound yet it will take a while to sweep Martin’s doings away from the crease. Oh well – the players can go swimming and check out the girls in their bikinis after a loss. Fortunately for Florida – the losses are far and few between …can it keep going ? Stay tuned …

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Rick Keene’s Eastern Division Final predictions

Boston

Pittsburgh

Philadelphia

Montreal ( without Martin )

Florida

New York Rangers

Washington

New Jersey / Montreal ( with Martin )

Buffalo

Toronto

Tampa

Ottawa

Winnipeg

Carolina

New York Islanders

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The Canucks  are here to play the Habs ce soir … if all goes well , they will pummel our guys and help push Martin aside. Unfortunately, the Habs always play well against formidable foes so Martin will live to see another game … sigh

Check out what Knuckles is up to …

Kevin’s site is always cool ….

Check out Aislin’s site …

Sex , Lies and Hockey Tape – Part Three


The New York Rangers sucked . Then they re-called one of the biggest sucks in hockey ( Sean Avery) and suddenly they do not suck as much anymore. Go figure – eh ? Standing behind Avery’s shenanigans is the stellar net-minding of Henrik Lundqvist. The team,  with Henrik leading the way , are second only to Boston in goals allowed in the East. Thank the Statue of Liberty because their offense is scoring in the middle of the pack. The 71 goals for is only two more than the Habs’ anemic output and it will be their Achilles heal come play-off time should they make it. Glen Sather’s steal of the decade ( Scott Gomez , Tom Pyatt and Michael Busto for Higgins , Valentenko , Janik and McDonagh ) is paying dividends as Ryan is becoming the star the Habs let go and Valentko is a steadfast D-man. None of the players Montreal received are productive anywhere. Goaltending and defence means everything in the play-offs – if Lundqvist can pull a Halak come spring , a parade through the streets of Manhattan is possible.

$$$$$$$$$ screws up everything. Just ask Lou Lamiorello.

Lou has a few too many drinks – decides that his defensive -minded Devils need a goal scorer , and promptly ruins the franchise by signing Kovalchuk to a huge multi-year deal. The hangover will not go away for Mr. Lamiorello as his silliness has ruined his team, his salary cap , the minors and his fan base. There are no monkeys in Kovalchuk’s  sequel so the Devils will have to discover ways to amuse themselves as their goaltender ages. The best thing Lamiorello can do at this point is trade Martin Brodeur to a contender in March and amass some young prospects with offensive talent to add to Kovalchuk’s skill. If not – the Devils will prove that Hell can freeze over …

The New York islanders cannot win , they cannot score and they cannot draw people to their decrepit building.John Tavares must feel like a fish out of water as he skates alone on most evenings. A new building will improve the spirits of everyone yet a change of management must follow.

The Ottawa Senators do not have cheerleaders – so there is not much to cheer for. They cannot score goals yet somehow they are squeaking by and playing close to .500 hockey. The team has rid themselves of two poisons in Kovalev and Gonchar and the changes have made the Sens much better. This is a re- building year for the team and expect them out of the play-offs once more. Next year will bring and new era in Ottawa as the parity in the NHL will ensure the team rises higher than this season. Alfredson may call it quits unless he drinks something from Selanne’s secret vile. If management was nice – they would ship him to a contender this year so that Daniel can do his best Ray Bourque impression.

Stay tuned for part four and if you need Kleenex after watching the Habs fall to the powerful Blue Jackets last night – Uniprix is having a sale ….

Please – Be Patient


The Montreal Forum

Le Forum de Montreal will return more consistent than ever in a few days.

Thank you for following and your patience …

Stay cool …

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