Fifth Straight Habs Loss Colours 2009-10 Chemistry Experiment A Bust

Many valiant heroes sometimes go down with a ship.

On the 2009-10 Canadiens, there have been consistent and considerable efforts from many elements, but the sum is weaker than the whole of its parts.

There have been great individual seasons and respectable showings so far. One only has to think of the resurgent Tomas Plekanec, the beaten to death but still kicking (until Jersey) Roman Hamrlik, the captivating Mike Cammalleri, the heroic, for a spell, Brian Gionta, and the often maligned and occasionally faultering backbone that is Carey Price.

Give a good grade to Travis Moen for his gutsy play.

A "nice to finally see ya" for Andrei Kostitsyn.

A positive nod to overused warrior Glen Metropolit.

Respect for the mostly consistent Jaroslav Spacek and the dependable Josh Gorges.

Max Pacioretty is a kid that is coming around at 20, slowly but sure.

When properly employed, Hal Gill's a good guy to have around.

Sergei Kostitsyn has his moments, competes but fails to complete.

Paul Mara has delivered what was expected of him in terms of toughness.

For the rest....

On this Canadiens team, there are plenty of good intentions to go around, but it all comes back down to the weak sum of the parts.

A crooked and twisted notion, is that these Habs strike no fear. They aren't difficult to play against, as was billed and hoped. They give it their all, but cannot win many individual battles. When they attempt aggressiveness, they spend the game parading to the penalty box. On the offensive, they buzz around like mosquitos without stingers, rarely drawing blood, nevermind fouls.

They are in sum a team that can't win the puck, that can't maintain possession of it , and cannot back down opponents.

In a word....screwed!

A hockey player is alot like a child. They are gonna be what they are gonna be. When it comes to habits, traits and tendencies, it is easier to change players than it is to change a player. The most depressing note on that, is that such a cleaning of house was what got this team here in the first place.

Wanting a passive player to be more aggressive's kinda like wanting a blonde to be a brunette. A shift ot two might offer a different colour, but the roots always grow back in.

I don't want to see this team blown up for a second year running. We tried that already and it has been a giant step sideways.

Scott Gomez, the first player added to the mix, has been everything cement is supposed to be.

Cammalleri and Gionta have balls bigger than the pucks they fire, but will never be the difference makers in the trenches.

Plekanec, surely the Habs most rounded player, is a containable asset when not surrounded by players with more killer instinct.

Andrei K, playing his best hockey while the team is all achors, is the poster boy for several other enigmas on the team.

Price, with the right kind of team in front of him, has all the attributes to win and win big. On this team, in this city, his best friend will be his psychologist.

These Canadiens may work very hard, but they work badly because they haven't the required skills, the physical composition, or the mindset to sustain the type of effort required to win more games than they lose. That, and no discernable leadership, does not help.

All the individual attributes of the players add up to one very ordinary team. One many fans couldn't get excited about from the get - go.

The game of hockey will always be one of unstoppable forces versus immovable objects. It's down to speed versus size, and too much of one without enough of the other doesn't cut it.

The top teams in the NHL are always prepared to suffer in order to win. Size, and perhaps the fear of further injuries, prevents these Canadiens from becoming a top team.

The most depressing notion is that they cannot shed their shin, just as a blonde cannot ever truly become the brunette they wished they were.

Remember that old "OFF" repellent commercial, where the dude sprays his arm with the chemical and inserts it into a plexiglass box and the insects lay off?

What constructive evidence of the 2009-10 Habs testifies that they can draw blood?

Remember Bob Gainey's playing card analogy of a few years back, something to do with a hand loaded with deuces and threes making it hard to bluff, or something along those lines?

In a hockey reality of aces and kings....oh just nevermind.

The mid season point is starring this club down with more dread than hope.

A seven game road trip, on the lip of a five game losing streak, hangs like a death knell over this season.

On the road against clubs this Canadiens edition could conceivably beat - Islanders, Thrashers, Hurricanes, Maple Leafs, Senators, Lightning and Panthers - the Habs must win at least 6 out of 7 or its all over folks.

The Canadiens have a combined home and away record of 7-5 against these foes so far this season.

I'd love to find a positive spin to offer on the next 14 days of this Canadiens' season, but I don't believe in miracles, voodoo, ghosts, kewpie dolls, spells, magical creams, Quebec virgins, luck, Zimmerman, the return of Markov, global warming, superstition, lotions, copper bracelets, pyramids, prayer, the power of positive thinking, faith healing or hypnotism.

And I'm a fuckin' optimist!

The 2009-10 Canadiens chemistry experiment has been a bust. Would you prefer that it is admitted now, or in three years time?

It's meat, my friends. Time to stick a fork in its butt and turn it over.

Robert L note: Sorry for not bothering to post a single pic or link with this post, but I felt this one needed to be delivered in plain old black and white.

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