Clue: Habs Edition

Ah, December. The month of snow, stress, drunken office parties, and the Montreal Canadiens taking it easy, slipping in the standings and, for the most part, eating a dick.

Let’s travel back to last year when December brought with it a slump borne of feeble play and a powerful flu virus. Players began dropping like flies, their insides repeatedly flushed out through every orifice. Others succumbed to injury. It was a puking, shitting, rehabbing mess. By the time the fellas recovered, they were out of a playoff spot.

As for this December? The Habs have dropped six straight at home, including a game that saw them blow a four-goal lead with the speed of a hooker on Ste. Catherine Street. As of this writing, Steve Begin, Bryan Smolinski and Patrice Brisebois are all sidelined with injuries. Michael Ryder recently took a seat in the press box, and Carbonneau has been juggling lines like a hooker on Ste. Catherine Street a recent École Nationale de Cirque grad at an audition for Cirque du Soleil.

Yes, you read that right: we have a circus school in Quebec. There’s also a restaurant chain that named a sandwich after Celine Dion. And just like her every night, it gets filled with meat that’s been around for a good 65 years.

As predicted earlier this year by yours truly, this December deja vu can only mean one thing: Guy Carbonneau is going to kill somebody. So whom will Carbo kill and how will he do it?

Read on for Clue: The Habs Edition.
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Making Puck: Return of the Rask

A young goaltender sent away by Toronto to Boston in return for sucktastic Andrew Raycroft once again delivered for the Bruins last night. How do you like that trade now, Leaves fans? Alrighty then! Meanwhile, could Buffalo continue its winning ways? And, yay, I get to make fun of Columbus’ team name again!

Tuukka Rask earned his second NHL victory in as many starts. One might have expected a filthy, dirty affair between these two teams. After all, it was their first meeting since Randy Jones of the Flyers crunched Patrice Bergeron of the Bruins and earned yet another suspension for Philly. Mostly, though, they played hockey and Boston won 6-3, chasing Philly’s goaltender from the net. But wait: Scott Hartnell kept it real by earning a game misconduct for a hit on Anderw Alberts. Oh Philly, don’t ever change. You had me at at hello boarding.

The Sabres are rattling opponents. It would appear that this team is finding its legs. Jochen Hecht potted two goals and an assist and Buffalo beat Washington 3-1. Overchikin now has a nine game points streak going. Shame about the rest of the team.

Oil that BJ up, baby! Two hot teams met on a steamy night on Edmonton (okay, it was kind of cold) and the Oilers managed to beat the Columbus blowjobs in regulation, 3-1. The big news in Edmonton is that local boy Fernando Pisani could return sooner than expected after losing much weight due to a shitting disease. Yes, that’s totally offensive on my part. Blowjobs!

Could Tuco earn a win? Yes. After looking like a steaming pile of shit for most of the season and pretty much losing his job to anonymous goaltender Mike Smith, Marty managed to earn a win on the road against the Isles. Of course, he still managed to let in at least one stinker of a goal. But the Stars bailed him out and won 3-2. Blowjobs!

MYFO at the NHL Store

Strolling along 6th avenue in Manhattan last week after sampling some of your fine American food at McDonald’s, I suddenly spotted something a Canadian never expects to see whilst traveling in the US: hockey jerseys. Across the street from me was a large store window adorned in jerseys and other hockey schwag. It was in fact the recently opened NHL Store.

I drew near, filed with anticipation. Dreams of NHL gear glory swam in my head. (Habs condoms! Habs shoehorns! Habs prostitutes! Bettman dart boards!) In my wallet was a wad of greenbacks grown fat thanks to the raging Canadian loonie.

And so I ventured inside to gawk and spend at the league’s beacon of retail.
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Making Puck: He’s Baaaaaaaack!

It was the day Rick “I’ll Take The Spread” Tocchet was informed he could return to the league in February. It was the day Daniel Briere made an appearance in Montreal after declining the team’s offseason offer. People fought, goals were scored, and the Leaves still suck. Onward.

Holy jumpin’ the Rangers put together two wins in a row! Drury scored and got an assist. Even Scotty Gomez picked up a point. And it was a shutout, too? Close off Broadway because it’s time to have a friggin’ parade! Wait, what’s that? They beat Washington? Forget it.

The evening in Boston began with the Red Sox owners and president bringing out the team’s two recent World Series trophies. How are you supposed to drink out of that fucker? Someone could lose an eye on one of those flags! Plus, it’s tiny and fragile. Bring me Stanley’s mug any day. Oh yeah, Boston and Buffalo traded pairs of goals for a while and then headed into overtime. Boston won. Baseball sucks.

Welcome to the Island. Now get off. Tampa Bay dropped another bad one, this time to the Isles. In fact, they get shutout 4-0. John Tortorella is going to kill someone with his shoe and then turn their skin into one of his poorly cut double-breasted suits.

Ottawa goes up big and then almost gives it away. They beat the Thrashers by two thanks to an empty-netter. Chris Neil got in a fight and spent most of the time playing to the crowd rather than throwing punches. Dumbass.

Saku Koivu might not be perfectly bilingual, but he speaks le points, mes amis. The captain gets a goal and an assist and passes Guy Carbonneau on the Habs’ all time points list. Briere was booed every time he touched the ice, and Les Glorieux gave the increasingly dirty Flyers a Montreal style Dirty Sanchez.

Detroit Rock City. The Wings head into Calgary and smack ’em 4-1. Zetterberg gets two goals. Calgary get the shaft.

As is his wont, Derek Boogaard dropped the gloves. But he also took a bad penalty that resulted in a goal, and the man he fought got the game winner. The Blues beat the Wild Groins. Somebody get these boys some Ben Gay.

Well okay, Jose. It’s been so long since I gave a thought to Jose Theodore, the Rogaine chugging poon hound who once meant so much to us in Montreal. It seems he’s been busy knocking up his lady love and, for the most part, letting in softies. But last night he was victorious! Take that Sydney Crosby and your two-goal game! The Avs prevail with three third period goals and Joe Holy Fucking Shit Sakic kept his points streak alive.

Let’s hear it for those old bones. Mathieu Schneider made his debut with the Ducks last night against the Columbus BlowJobs. He even took a shot in the ensuing shootout and managed to net the winner. WTF?

Vanboooover loses at home again. The hippies are getting restless and the home team is getting booed. Losing to road-sucky Nashville at home? And getting shutout? That’s enough to harsh anyone’s vibe, man. This is some serious BC Skunk.

I wrote this while suffering from what I think is a broken nose. God forbid it leaves me looking like Rick Tocchet.

Morning Puck: Kane is Able

The Rangers have reverted to pre-cap days and can’t seem to buy a win. They lose 1-0 for the second game in a row, despite big offseason offensive signings. Gomez continues to suck it.

Kovalchuk dangles to victory. Lowly Atlanta gets a shootout win over the increasingly lowly Leaves. Kovalchuk won it on a move that made Toskala look silly. At the other end, Hedberg basically tackled Sundin to prevent him scoring on a previous try. It was funny to watch.

Rookie Patrick Kane gathers four points in a loss to the BJs. Eleven goals are scored and the blowjobs take a 7-4 win over Chicago.

Sucks to the Ducks. St. Louis continues to show life as they beat the champs 4-2. Where’s your Niedermessiah now?

Crybaby Smyth returns to Edmonton and the Avs win. Oh, what an emotional night. Not a dry eye in the oil patch… bullshit. Colorado won 4-2 by adding an empty netter. Now everyone hates Ryan Smyth.

Just when you thought they had no goaltending, LA get a shutout win. Of course, LaBarbera only had to stop 17 shots and his team put up six goals to beat the crap out of Nashville. But it’s a goose egg nonetheless.

As for the above image? It’s Cain and Abel of course. Read your Bible, heathens.

Cracking the Kovalev Code

In February of 1918, German engineer Arthur Scherbius applied for a patent on a new type of cipher machine he had developed. It would later be marketed as Enigma model A, and the German military would use subsequent versions of the machine before and during World War II. When the Allied forces managed to crack the Enigma it gave them a critical advantage in the Battle of the Atlantic. Some say it trimmed the length of the war by two years.

Cracking the Enigma was key then, and if you pay any attention to the Montreal Canadiens, it’s still of the utmost importance. But instead of a small black machine that looks like a typewriter with gears, the Hab enigma is a 6’2’’ 229-pound Russian winger by the name of Alex Kovalev.

Kovalev, the story goes, is one of the most gifted players in the league. He can stickhandle in a phone booth, tie defenders up in knots, make plays and shots that your average NHLer couldn’t dream of. Ah, but he’s an “enigma” who plays below potential most of the time. How do you solve a riddle like Kovalev? Oh, he’s just so fucking intriguing. An enigma…

Sorry, Kovalev isn’t an enigma. He’s just an underachiever.

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Making Puck: Bill Guerin Will Eat Your Youth

The Bruins appear to have some life. They put Tim Thomas in nets again and he saved 35 out of 36 shots against Tampa Bay. Will Julien make it through an entire season without getting fired? Tune in next time. Bruins win 4-1.

The Foligno Leap is back and it’s annoying as hell. Nick Foligno scored his first ever NHL goal and Jason Spezza decided to try his hand at a goal instead of assists. Stupid turnovers and penalties once again cost the Habs the game. Senators win 4-3. Having your fiancé come home drunk and gloating at midnight doesn’t help things, either. Fucking Ottawa girls.

Brodeur was involved in a shutout last night, but he wasn’t the one taking it home. The other French Marty mouthpiece, Martin Biron, turned away 38 shots in a 4-0 Philly win over the Devils.

Bill Guerin is getting’ old but he will ravage you if you let him. He’s like the NHL’s dangerous sexy senior. (Chelios is too much of a prick.) Billy got a hat trick last night, and it was the difference. The Islanders beat the Capitals 5-2.

Thrashers Win! Thrashers Win! They go up 4-0 by early in the third period but then give the Rangers an opportunity to come back. Atlanta wins 5-3 and somewhere Bob Hartley is in a room by himself telling his imaginary goon to go send a message. Sad, no?

Bryan McCabe gets his revenge. He scores the tying goal in the second as the Leafs come back to beat Florida 3-2. Antropov pots the winner with only 28 seconds left in the game. Serves you right, Panthers. Fuckers. Oh, and fuck the Leaves as well.

Calgary avoid losing three in a row at home thanks to LA and its pathetic goaltending. Both Aubin and LaBarbera see action. Anze Kopitar has another big night with three points but Flames win 4-3.

There’s nothing like playing Phoenix to make a team feel good. The hella injured Oilers didn’t exactly cream them, though. Roloson faced 41 shots, while Edmonton only managed to throw out 17 of their own. Oilers win 4-2. Gretzky’s head explodes.

Detroit, facing some injuries of its own, take down San Jose. They get two in the third to break a 2-2 tie and win 4-2. Lidstrom logged almost 30 minutes of ice time and had six shots on net. Bonkers.