Saturday, 11 October 2014

Today in Habs History: October 11th Edition


1939: The Canadiens acquired Earl Robinson from the Chicago Black Hawks, in a cash deal.



1952: The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Detroit Red Wings 2-1 at the Montreal Forum, in the first hockey game televised on the CBC.



1958: Goalie Jacques Plante recorded his 36th career shutout in the Canadiens' 2-0 win over the Red Wings, at the Forum.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Today in Habs History: January 15th Edition

Allowing five goals on eight shots from the eighties powerhouse Edmonton Oilers, could certainly ruin a rookie goalie’s confidence. But when the goaltender’s name is Patrick Roy, it is a completely different story.

“I don’t want to say I lost my confidence but I played bad against Edmonton,” Roy said on that loss back on January 11, 1986. “But tonight helped.”

The tonight he was referring to was four days after that disappointing night. Roy was back between the pipes against the Winnipeg Jets. On that night, he didn't allow a single puck past him, earning his first career NHL shutout.
Guy Carbonneau had the Canadiens on the board with just a 1:05 of play, stealing the puck off Jets defenseman Dave Ellett and blasting a shot past Dan Bouchard.

Rookie Stephane Richer, who had missed 13 games with an ankle injury and not scored a goal in nearly two months, added to the lead just under six minutes later on the power-play. Mats Naslund added a third goal in the second period and Richer closed out the scoring 11 minutes into third period.

The Canadiens defense, that was without Chris Chelios due to a knee injury, made Roy’s night relatively easy, allowing just 19 shots at the 20-year-old goalie and just ten in the first two periods.

It was argued by The Montreal Gazette’s Red Fisher that the Jets, having done the Habs a favour the night before by beating the division leading Quebec Nordiques, were tired and disinterested in the game.

“The boys did the job in front of me,” said Roy post-game. Roy’s hardest save came at the ninth minute of the second period, when his glove hand reached out and snagged a Scott Arniel shot that seemed destined for the top corner.

It would be the only shutout of the season, en route to a Stanley Cup later that spring for the man soon to be known as St. Patrick. Roy would put up 29 whitewashes with the Canadiens and 66 in his NHL career.

Elsewhere on this day..

1927: Netminder George Hainsworth picks up his 5th shutout in his rookie season as the Canadiens blank the Maroons 1-0.

1949: Maurice Richard’s 15th career hat trick, during a 7-1 win over the Chicago Black Hawks, puts him at 200 career NHL goals. “The Rocket” became the fourth Canadiens player to reach the milestone.

1955: The Rocket scores two goals in his 700th career game, in the Canadiens 4-3 loss to the Detroit Red Wings.

1966: Claude Provost’s goal and three assists leads the Candiens to a 6-4 victory over Chicago.

1981: Pierre Larouche records his 7th career hat trick and adds an assist in the Habs 7-3 win over the Winnipeg Jets.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Today in Habs History: January 25th Edition

Chris Chelios turns 51 today (Photo: Getty Images)

1940: The Canadiens end their team-record seven-game losing streak with a 2-2 tie against the New York Americans.

1968: Rogie Vachon records his second career shutout in the Habs 2-0 win over the Boston Bruins. Montreal extended their team-record winning streak to eight games.

1993: Ed Ronan scored after only 14 seconds in overtime setting a tea, record for the fastest goal in overtime in the regular season.

1996: Martin Rucinsky scores his first career hat trick in Montreal’s 6-2 win over the Florida Panthers. Vincent Damphousse added a goal and three assists.

Habs Born on This Day: Chris Chelios (1962), Randy McKay (1967), Gordie Dwyer (1978)

Friday, 17 January 2014

Today in Habs History: January 17th Edition

Today marks the birthdate of one of hockey’s all-time greats, Jacques Plante. There’s been much written and recorded on the life of “Jake The Snake.” Todd Denault’s biography of the Hall of Fame goaltender is probably the best place to start, if you haven’t already read it.

But who was Pat Hughes? Well he scored his first career hat trick on this day in 1979 as a rookie, as the Canadiens defeated the Los Angeles Kings 7-3. Mark Napier (who is Hughes’ brother-in-law) had two goals as the Habs peppered Kings’ golaie Mario Lessard with 44 shots.

Hughes finished the season with 17 points in 41 games, which is impressive for a rookie on a team stacked with top minute forwards with names like Lafleur, Larouche, Shutt and co. He played eight games in the playoffs to get his name engraved on the Stanley Cup.

He had shown a consistent scoring touch in the minors, but with a multitude of offense already, and Ken Dryden retiring, the Canadiens prioritized filling the goaltending void. With that, Hughes was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Denis Herron, who, as we know, was no replacement for Dryden.

Hughes had 18 goals for the Penguins in 1979-80, but was dealt to the Edmonton Oilers during the following season. There, with a kid named Gretzky dishing out biscuits left and right, Hughes had three straight 20-plus-goal season seasons and picked up two more Stanley Cup rings.

Dealt to the Buffalo Sabres to start the 1985-86 season, Hughes never regained his scoring touch, and left the NHL after a season split between Hartford and St. Louis.

More on Pat Hughes at Greatest Hockey Legends.

Elsewhere on this day..

1942: Joe Benoit scores his first career hat trick in the Canadiens 6-2 win over the New York Rangers.

1963: Gilles Tremblay scores the 4000th goal in franchise history, and Jean Belivieau adds three assists in a 6-4 Canadiens win over the Toronto Maple Leafs.

1968: Jean Beliveau’s 14th career hat trick leads the Habs to a 6-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings.

1973: Rejean Houle records his first career hat trick in Montreal’s 6-4 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.

1996: In the first regular season game at the Palladium (now Scotiabank Place), Jocelyn Thibault’s 2nd shutout of the season gives the Canadiens a 3-0 victory over the Ottawa Senators.

2003: The Canadiens fire head coach Michel Therrien and replace him with Claude Julien. Ten years later..

Habs Born on This Day: Sylvain Turgeon (1965)