How Bad Do They Want It???
It could very much so be too early in the season, but I do have to ask… Could the Stanley Cup finally be returning to Canada?
Ironically the last team that won Lord Stanley’s Cup was none other than the Montreal Canadians, who look to be an early contender to start the 2015-16 season. Last season. Montreal clinched all but the Presidents trophy with a 50-22-10 record and 110 points. Carey Price dominated the NHL and took home the Hart, Vezina, Ted Lindsey and also shared the William M. Jennings trophy with Corey Crawford. The only thing he did not do last season, was win the Stanley Cup. Price and the rest of the Canadians were bested by a very young, very hungry Tampa Bay Lightning team.
With an amazing stand through-out the 2014-15 season, the Montreal Canadian fans would look towards another year without the cup. It was 22 years ago that Montreal went 48-30-6 with goaltender, Patrick Roy, 28, now that is not as impressive as 50-22-10 but it is pretty darn close. Roy and the Habs would take on Wayne Gretzky and the Los Angeles Kings and beat them four games to one. That my friends, is the last real time Canadian fans had anything to cheer about.
The next few seasons would go by and eventually Roy would play his last game before being traded to the Colorado Avalanche. Since that day, Montreal has looked for a goaltender to fill the void in net. Here and there they would find a spark, but nothing to get the fire going. Then 2005 would come along, all eyes focused on the Pittsburgh Penguins and Sidney Crosby, everyone seems to have forgotten the #5 pick that season, Carey Price.
Price would sneak in behind the scenes, Price would wait until the 2007-2008 season to get his shot. At 19-years-old he would prove worthwhile. Playing in 41 games, Price would show up with 24-Wins 12-Losses and 3-Overtime losses. The Canadians would find themselves in the playoffs but out after 11 games with the rookie goaltender. After that season, the net belonged to Carey Price and no one would compete for it. In 8-full seasons under Price, the Canadians have gone to the playoffs 7 times and so far, they are on track for 8 of 9.
The Canadians are off and running to start the 2015-16 season. Naming Max Pacioretty as their 29th captain in team history. Carey Price coming off one of the most remarkable seasons in NHL history and PK Subban coming into his second of an eight-year contract with the club.
The Canadians are off to a 7-0-0 start and remain the only undefeated team in this fresh 2015-16 season. The have scored 23 goals and after Price’s second shutout of the season they have allowed only 7 goals. Carey Price, now 6-0-0, is sporting insane numbers. He has 2 shutouts, a 1.00 goals-against average and a .966 save percentage stopping 170 of 176 shots.
This team is playing a full-team game, you are not seeing sloppy play in front of their goaltender, much less in their own zone. They currently rank third in the NHL in Penalty Kill percentage, having been short-handed 21 times already this season (not including the St. Louis game.)
A few faults that could come back to hurt Montreal as of now are the amount of penalties they are taking and also their power play rate which is ranked 20th in the NHL right now (not including the St. Louis game.)
Other than that it is safe to say the Habs are on FIRE!! Or at least Carey Price is playing like he not only wants another Vezina, but he wants the President’s trophy and just maybe a Stanley Cup. If the season ended today (not that any of us want it to!! I mean it JUST started) the Habs would be my pick and might just stay in the top 2 for the entire season. Unless of course massive tragedy strikes or just injuries or fatigue.
It is far too early to predict or say anything, but WOW, this team is playing damn near perfect hockey.