13 October 2010
This photo has nothing to do with the Habs or the Lightning, but this is Georges St. Pierre in Montreal yesterday. He's a Habs fan, so that was justification enough for me to use it.
Already on our first roadtrip, the Lightning head up to the low-key city of Montreal. Ok, low key it is not. As I wrote in my post over at Raw Charge yesterday, it's not just the french players like Lecavalier, St. Louis or Simon Gagne that will get a lot of attention, but the management and the coaching as well. Both Assistant GM of the Lightning, Julien BriseBois and head coach Guy Boucher, both worked for the Canadiens' AHL affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs as of last year. BriseBois won't get that much attention, and Boucher shouldn't really since he only coached the Bulldogs for one year, but the media in Montreal will still make this into a huge deal.
"I watched every (Canadiens) game, whether it was live or a few hours after, so definitely I know the players a lot," Boucher told NHL.com. "I have been looking at them on video now and they look even better than last year. I think they have more drive and I think they're going to be a very hard team to beat.
"I don't want to make it seem bigger than it is. It's a special day, but it has to be business. It's very important to not send out the vibe of too much emotion on my players." -Game preview on Canadiens.com
If you haven't read it yet, head over to Raw Charge for my weekly post called Tuesday's with Dani for more talk about Boucher's return to Montreal
Enemy Blog: Head over to my favorite Habs blog aptly named The Four Habs Fans for sexy photos and awesome photoshops
On the Lightning website:
Guy Boucher walked into a Montreal-area restaurant for the perfect cap to a beautiful June day of fishing only to see his face on television and hear the analysts talking about the Canadiens' home opener.
Boucher, who two weeks earlier was named coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning, was aware the NHL's schedule was coming out that day. He couldn't believe the ironic twist fate had thrown at him.
"My first reaction was, 'Are you kidding me?'" Boucher recalled in a phone interview with NHL.com Tuesday.
The NHL schedulers are funny people sometimes, non?
As I said earlier, he's only coach the Habs' AHL affiliate for one year, coaching only three current players on the Canadiens (Tom Pyatt, PK Subban and Mathieu Darche) he knows what to expect when the team goes into the Bell Centre. Even before they arrived in Montreal, in order to cut down on the number of phone interviews, the Lightning held a conference call on Monday. Today he'll get to talk with the media in both French and English.
But back to the game at hand:
So the Lightning win their first game of the season they begin a three game roadtrip in Montreal tonight, followed by a back to back in Philadelphia tomorrow and the Panthers on Saturday.
Both teams have not played since Saturday but this will be the home opener for the Habs.Â It says the game starts at 7:30, but expect around 8 since Montreal loves themselves a good ceremony of some sort. The Canadiens come into tonights game with a record of one win and one loss and this will be the first appearance back in Montreal for Dominic Moore.
The last time the Habs fans got to vote for something, it was the All Star game two seasons ago, where Komisarek somehow was considered an all-star player. The three stars of the each home game will be picked by Habs fans this year, so take the results for whatever that's worth.
- No word on the starter yet though Erlendsson says he thinks Smith will start
- Ohlund is still out with a knee injury
- Mattias Ritola and Matt Smaby are your healthy scratches
- For the Canadiens: Hamrlik makes his return back to the Canadiens roster back from his knee injury, Andrei Markov is still out
Your pre-game reading links:
- Check out Bloguin's NHL Hater's Guide to the Eastern Conference present by Barry Melrose Rocks. They Guide to the Western Conference can be found here. Yours truly wrote the section for the Flames, so check it out
- Elliotte Friedman's 30 Thoughts this week cover why the Oilers should make a clean break with Souray. One of this thoughts is about and whether he can become a real star.
- Official Lightning preview
- Gameday morning updates from Erik Erlendsson
Game time: 7:30pm EST on SUN (HD), RDS (HD)