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04-01-2004, 09:06 AM
Jacques Strappe
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Halifax
Posts: 424
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Habs Appreciation Thread (or HAT)

The reason for this thread (the HAT) is simple. I'm sick and tired of all the whining and complaining on this board. I realize it's a public forum, and any 12 year old with an internet connection can access it, but how many times do we need to hear that 'Kovalev sucks' and all of the doom and gloom.

The Habs are going to the playoffs .
This alone is far more than many expected or predicted at the beginning of the season. So let's just give our beloved Montreal Canadiens a hand for a terrific and exciting season!

If you want to play the pessimist, there are dozens of other threads where you can join the 'band-wagon-jumper-offers', so off ya go...

Let's focus on the MANY positives this season:

Bob Gainey:
well, it's Bob Gainey. Hmm, what's he done for us?
- He got rid of some of our deadwood: MacKay, Czerk, Audette...
- He put the fans at the Bell Centre in their place re: Brisebois, result = pretty good season by Patrice.
- Picked Begin up off waivers
- I think he made a couple of deadline deals
- and most importantly he's brought pride back to the organization. It's been a long stretch where I can honestly say I've been proud to be a Habs fan - with all the upper management fiasco's.

Michael Ryder
The most pleasant and unexpected surprise of the season for me. He's my new 'favourite' Hab. I just love watching this guy play. It's obvious he loves the game. Most importantly, he converted half of Newfoundland from Leaf fans to Habs fans. PRICELESS. Will probably finish 2nd to Raycroft for the Calder.

Sheldon Souray
We all hoped he could come back and show the form he had in the '02 playoffs. Well, I believe he far exceeded expectations. Nobody could have predicted that he would be challenging for the leading scoring by a defenceman and the Norris trophy (before injury). A huge asset to the power play. Masterson Trophy candidate for sure.

Mike Ribeiro
A 'break-out' season if ever there's been one. Previous best 18 points. He's got 63 so far. He's a +12 (vs. the -11 in '02 when he had 18 pts.) Great player with tonnes of talent. His only downside is he needs more muscle. That's not being negative, just an observation.

Saku Koivu
Though his point production is down from last year, Saks has been a pretty steady go-to guy. I think he is deserving of his Captaincy. He leads more by example than vocally perhaps. But I think we could all learn a thing or two by following this guy's lead.

Though he's been hot and cold by times, the hot times are what counts. And I believe there's no way he can put all of his personal problems out of his mind. Considering what he's playing through, he's having an unbelievable year. He will be the man to beat in the playoffs. Should the Habs make it to the cup finals, he can add Conn Smythe to his mantle.

Steve Begin
I've got to add this guy to the list of positives. Gainey's best move of the year in my mind. This guy plays with such intensity, it's incredible. I find it hard to believe he was put on waivers! He deserves to be a permanent fixture at centre on the 3rd line.

Claude Julien
I almost overlooked CJ because I'm not happy with all of his juggling of late. But that aside, he installed a system that the guys bought into and it worked. Simple as that. Benching Ribeiro = genius. Should be a Jack Adams candidate.

Those are my 'major' core positives.
Honourable mentions: Zednik, Garon, Langdon, Bouillon, and Brisebois

That's the end of the 'feel good' thread. What are your thoughts?

:gman: GO GO :gman:

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