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Why bench Laraque and Stewart?

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Old
04-09-2009, 10:48 PM
  #1
Bear Pride
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Why bench Laraque and Stewart?

So, Gainey knows he's playing the Bruins. He also knows of the bad blood... So why not play at least one of the "tough guys"???

Before someone answers "because O'Byrne and Komisarek got it covered", let me say this:

1) O'Byrne doesnt have it covered.

2) Komisarek being the only potential fighter out there exposes him to being in the box for up to 5 minutes. Or worse, exposes him to be injured. Do the Habs really need another defensive injury, especially Komisarek?

So, again I ask, why not play one of them? At least Stewart... And then you ask, "Well, who do you bench?" How about mr. turleneck Plekanec? How amazing has he been lately?

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04-09-2009, 10:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bear Pride View Post
So, Gainey knows he's playing the Bruins. He also knows of the bad blood... So why not play at least one of the "tough guys"???

Before someone answers "because O'Byrne and Komisarek got it covered", let me say this:

1) O'Byrne doesnt have it covered.

2) Komisarek being the only potential fighter out there exposes him to being in the box for up to 5 minutes. Or worse, exposes him to be injured. Do the Habs really need another defensive injury, especially Komisarek?

So, again I ask, why not play one of them? At least Stewart... And then you ask, "Well, who do you bench?" How about mr. turleneck Plekanec? How amazing has he been lately?
Who should replace Pleks at center then ?

IMO Kostitsyn should have been benched for Laraque though...

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04-09-2009, 10:54 PM
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eightyseven
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Originally Posted by Carey Price View Post
Komisarek should not be in the equation. First, with Markov out we can't lose him for 5 needlessly...of course there are instances where he has to go. Second, I think his shoulder is far from 100%, another fight could put him out 4-6 weeks. He used to fight every 5-10 games, but since that injury he has not dropped the gloves once.

First guy I would dress Laraque ahead of is Dandenault. His dumb penality nearly cost us a playoff spot.
Laraque could have just as easily taken a dumb penalty....

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04-09-2009, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bear Pride View Post
So, Gainey knows he's playing the Bruins. He also knows of the bad blood... So why not play at least one of the "tough guys"???

Before someone answers "because O'Byrne and Komisarek got it covered", let me say this:

1) O'Byrne doesnt have it covered.

2) Komisarek being the only potential fighter out there exposes him to being in the box for up to 5 minutes. Or worse, exposes him to be injured. Do the Habs really need another defensive injury, especially Komisarek?

So, again I ask, why not play one of them? At least Stewart... And then you ask, "Well, who do you bench?" How about mr. turleneck Plekanec? How amazing has he been lately?
Komisarek should not be in the equation. First, with Markov out we can't lose him for 5 needlessly...of course there are instances where he has to go. Second, I think his shoulder is far from 100%, another fight could put him out 4-6 weeks. He used to fight every 5-10 games, but since that injury he has not dropped the gloves once.

First guy I would dress Laraque ahead of is Dandenault. His dumb penality nearly cost us a playoff spot.

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04-09-2009, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Pazuzu View Post
Who should replace Pleks at center then ?

IMO Kostitsyn should have been benched for Laraque though...
You can't be benching your best/most skilled players in must win games. As much as Andrei has not played well lately, he can start scoring and go on a tear...somewhat like D'agostini did tonight.

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04-09-2009, 10:56 PM
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I'd want to keep them guessing in the first round.

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Old
04-09-2009, 10:57 PM
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I agree. Here's how you do it:

Tanguay - Koivu - Kovalev
Higgins - Plekanec - D'Agostini
Latendresse - Lapierre - Kostopolous
Stewart - Metropolit - Laraque

Hamrlik - Komisarek
Schneider - Dandenault
Gorges - Weber

Put some sandpaper in the lineup now against Boston. Drop O'Byrne who's taking too many stupid penalties and Kostitsyn - sand paper is definitely not the translation of his name.

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Old
04-09-2009, 11:16 PM
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He's resting them for the playoffs ... we can send out our goons then, and hopefully BGL will take out Chara!

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Old
04-09-2009, 11:22 PM
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Gainey had a gameplan - We need the point(s) more then anything. Let them come at us yet never drop the gloves. The refs will have to flow them with penalties and we can only score on penalties anyways. So - provoke penalties even if it means getting hurt. Remember the first penalty in the game that Pleks obtained behind Thomas' net.

The problem was that the refs messed with his game plan. Chara charging Komisarek like he did, after a clean hit, should have got a game(s) suspension+, not a roughing penalty on both sides. Also - Lucic as third man. That's why Gainey was really angry at the officials after the game and I expect him to protest officially.

Still, somehow the gameplan worked in the end - we got the point thanks to our powerplay and to indiscipline penalties in the end.

Playing Laraque and Stewart would have kept the Bruins out of the penalty box and we would have scored a lot less.

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Old
04-09-2009, 11:53 PM
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I don't think Stewart would fare too well against the Bruins' heavyweights and he isn't that fantastic a hockey player.

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Old
04-10-2009, 12:02 AM
  #11
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Because we needed goals

not penalties (like Lucic)

BGL zero goals

Stewart zero goals

enough said.

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04-10-2009, 12:03 AM
  #12
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Why weren't they playing? So Bob can put Weber and D'Agostini in.

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Old
04-10-2009, 12:06 AM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pazuzu View Post
Who should replace Pleks at center then ?

IMO Kostitsyn should have been benched for Laraque though...
Cause BGL has that great shot that AKost has and will net a game tying goal

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Old
04-10-2009, 12:17 AM
  #14
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Gainey needed 1 point to clinch a playoffs spot, he went with the ones he thought would give us the best chances to get that pt.. But now that we are in and that the other team will need 4 wins to get the serie, I wouldnt be surprised to see both Laraque and Stewart dressed early in the serie to pass a message if ever we face Boston..

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Old
04-10-2009, 12:30 AM
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Crouching tiger, hidden dragon


hidden dragon being released in the playoffs

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Old
04-10-2009, 12:32 AM
  #16
number 11
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playing into boston's game would have cost us in the end. we needed a point, not to prove we can fight.

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Old
04-10-2009, 04:50 AM
  #17
Miller Time
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the line change thing makes some sense... not wanting Julien to be able to expose Laraque/Stewart, though that kind of reinforces the mistake of signing Laraque for that much in the first place (no point having a high priced toy if you can't even use it when it matters most).

I think there might be another angle to it.

We have a good chance of meeting the B's in the playoffs...
In the playoffs there is hardly any fighting, making Laraque a likely press box candidate...
Our team is soft, and arguably back down/get intimidated by physical play...

Gainey knows these things, and also knows that the only way to fix the situation is to force the team to "sink or swim".

by keeping our two most physical guys out of the lineup in a game where the B's were no doubt going to be looking to send a message (and are secure enough in the standings that they could much more afford to "let loose" and take liberties, where as we had to deal with that and not retaliate because we NEEDED a point), he was both challenging the team and getting a perfect chance to evaluate what he has going forward.

He knew it, and perhaps more importantly, the players knew it. No hiding last night.

Brilliant, if risky, move by Gainey... Brilliant.

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Old
04-10-2009, 06:09 AM
  #18
Habs Icing
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Originally Posted by Miller Time View Post
Brilliant, if risky, move by Gainey... Brilliant.
You forgot your.

You do realize 4 games like last night during the playoffs and we get swept out? Right? We effing lost. So don't tell me it was a brilliant move. It was a bone head move.

It was either a bone head move last night or when he went out and signed Laraque. Why get him if you're not gonna use him against teams like Boston? With Laraque and Stewart in the lineup, Boston doesn't pull any of their thuggery. Lucic would be dancing circles, telling Georges he's not allowed to fight.

If we meet Boston in the playoffs and Silent Bob doesn't dress those two, I'll jump on the dump Gainey bandwagon. Watching O'Byrne turtle against Thornton, seeing Komisarek turtle against Chara, witnessing Thornton and Lucic attacking Komi was disgusting. Gainey made a terrible move last night and whining about the refs just proves that he shouldn't be coaching. Maybe he should go sit in Carbo's livingroom and drink Carbo's beer while they discuss whining techniques.

I have never agreed with the L'antichambre gang but last night they were bang on and Morissette said it best. Why take a chance with NHL head office when you have the means to police the game yourself?

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04-10-2009, 06:20 AM
  #19
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I've been thinking about this over night and the only thing I can think of is that he really wanted Weber in for the powerplay (which paid off), but he didn't trust him to take regular shifts on defence. So he needs to dress Dadenault to play D/F. Therefore we are missing that spot on the 4th line where he would play one of stewart or Laraque.

I suppose he could have moved higgins up to the 2nd line and benched Dagostini, but Bruins roll 4 lines pretty well and I think Gainey wanted 4 strong lines which he gets when he plays Higgins on the 4th. Also, in hindsight, Dagostini played ok :-)

The poster that said bench Dadenault? I think that would have been a mistake. He played a very strong game except for that one penalty. I hate when people **** all over a player because of one bad penalty taken in a game.

So basically, I just don't see where he could have fit them in. Rest assured, after this game, Laraque will most definately be playing if we draw the Bruins the first round.

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04-10-2009, 06:32 AM
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Crouching tiger, hidden dragon


hidden dragon being released in the playoffs
Yeah, we went with the Flying Dagger last night.

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Old
04-10-2009, 07:20 AM
  #21
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To everyone questioning Gainey's decision ask yourself one question:

What would you choose ? The point or the warm fuzzy feeling (also known as moral victory) when you get to physically match your opponent ?

'Cause Laraque present = a lot less PP for the habs = defeat.

Also - we got roughed like that because the refs were tolerating things they should have not.

Gainey choose the best tactic to make sure we reach the Playoffs. Once there he will also choose the best tactic for each match, should it involve Laraque or not.

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Old
04-10-2009, 07:24 AM
  #22
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Gainey could have dressed BGL and Stew and sat AK46 and Dags. We may have won a few more fights but I don't think we get the point we needed.

AK46 was very good and Dags was also.

Just because Idiot Brunet said it 72 times yesterday, it doesn't make right.

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Old
04-10-2009, 07:42 AM
  #23
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Because we needed goals

not penalties (like Lucic)

BGL zero goals

Stewart zero goals

enough said.
Pretty much.

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Old
04-10-2009, 07:42 AM
  #24
Miller Time
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Originally Posted by onice View Post
You forgot your.

You do realize 4 games like last night during the playoffs and we get swept out? Right? We effing lost. So don't tell me it was a brilliant move. It was a bone head move.

It was either a bone head move last night or when he went out and signed Laraque. Why get him if you're not gonna use him against teams like Boston? With Laraque and Stewart in the lineup, Boston doesn't pull any of their thuggery. Lucic would be dancing circles, telling Georges he's not allowed to fight.

If we meet Boston in the playoffs and Silent Bob doesn't dress those two, I'll jump on the dump Gainey bandwagon. Watching O'Byrne turtle against Thornton, seeing Komisarek turtle against Chara, witnessing Thornton and Lucic attacking Komi was disgusting. Gainey made a terrible move last night and whining about the refs just proves that he shouldn't be coaching. Maybe he should go sit in Carbo's livingroom and drink Carbo's beer while they discuss whining techniques.

I have never agreed with the L'antichambre gang but last night they were bang on and Morissette said it best. Why take a chance with NHL head office when you have the means to police the game yourself?
I do think signing Laraque was a bonehead move (at least as far as how much/how long he was signed for), and the fact that it made more sense not to use him last night pretty much makes that crystal clear.

that said, being able to acknowledge a mistake and/or not let it determine your future decisions is a tough thing to do.
Gainey might not come out and say it (for various reasons), but it's pretty obvious that the laraque signing was a mistake.

but my point is that if Gainey went into last nights game purposely leaving the "tough guys" at home in order to test his team, in order to see what he has and thus better evaluate his options for the offseason, than it was a smart move.

risky, because you face the potential that your team will get pushed around and back down, costing you the precious points you need to make the playoffs...

risky because you risk losing a player to injury as the other team takes liberties on your guys without anyone to do anything about it

but the payoff is that you get a crystal clear idea of what you can expect come playoff time, of who you can count on to step up, and who you need to glue to the bench.

laraque/stewart in the lineup might have meant the Bruins taking fewer liberties, sure, but do you really think it changes the outcome (an OT loss against the best team in the conference), or changes anything in a negative way about the playoffs or the fact that we are more likely to be out in 4 or 5 games then to make a deep run?

looking at the outcome (which wasn't a sure thing going in), don't you think that the Habs, as a team, come away from that game feeling like they can handle whatever the Bruins throw at them physically? that kind of confidence could very well be the difference between a quick exit and a hard fought series that goes down to the wire...

and likewise, after the B's did everything they could to intimidate us last night, don't you think that the fact that we took it in stride and still forced them to come from behind in the 3rd only to escape with an OT win in their own barn against a borderline playoff team missing it's best player, will plant some seeds of doubt in their mind?

i get accused of being to critical of Gainey all the time around here, but i've got no hesitation in giving him fair props when it's due. As coach, last night he showed why he's a great hockey mind... just wish he'd have as much success behind the desk as he does behind the bench!

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Old
04-10-2009, 07:46 AM
  #25
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The Bruins are better as well as more physical and the Canadiens have sustained injuries to some of their key players. It would be a stunning upset if they ousted the Bruins or any other playoff team at this point. I hope they finish ahead of the Rangers so that the Bruins fans don't get the satisfaction of seeing the crippled Canadiens go down to their team.

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