Well, after tonight's murder, we are giving up an astounding 3.39 GPG while scoring at a rate of 2.93 scored per game. In the "New" NHL, this is slightly below avg. as we always have been. No changes there. Still, this would give us 241 GF, our highest total since 96-97 when we scored 248. But the 278 GA we are on pace for would be the worst total since 92-93 (when it was 7.5 goals per game in the NHL). Just think about it, relatively speaking, 278 goals this season is as bad as if not worse than the 234 GA in 02-03, though 96-97 (roughly 5.8 goals per game , slightly lower than 05-06 so far) was a putrid defensive effort of 276 GA. Think about it, though, 278 GA in a 6.2 GPG league is worse than any defensive team in Montreal history since the early 40s. Seriously, it is.
Because the Habs always had at least one of the top 5 defenses in the league pre-1995, it is rare to find a year where they were even average before the purge of 95. One stumbling year, where we almost immediately turned it around, 1983-84 saw the Habs set a team record with 295 GA. Sevigny sucked by this point and the D had lost Engblom, Langway, Lapointe, Savard and Lupien all within the past 3 seasons. And that was in a league with nearly 8 GPG. So, using mathematical skills, I can honestly say this current Habs club is one of the top 5 worst defensive editions in their long, and mostly storied, history. That's how bad it's gotten. Offense will only improve when grit and size are added to clear the path to the front of the net, but a defensive fix is the best cure IMO. When your goalie and d-core can limit the other team, it naturally opens up the offensive game (unless you have even less offensive talent than the current Habs, say a team like the Flames ).