Habs Fever: Despite setbacks, Habs not ready to give up yet
Published Thursday, January 6, 2011 10:59PM EST
The road keeps getting harder for the Habs and they keep getting results despite it all.
The club is now down two of its best defencemen for the remainder of the season.
If you had been told before the season began that the club would lose both Markov and Gorges for more than half a season, you would not have predicted a playoff spot.
And in the end, they may not actually get there, but they sure don't seem ready to lie down and give it up.
Gorges will undergo surgery on his right knee for an injury suffered against the New York Islanders on Boxing Day. However, Pierre Gauthier saying his knee locked in that game tells everyone that the problem has been chronic for Gorges.
The defence is so young now, it is difficult to see the team holding on and earning a post season berth. So much now rests on the inexperienced shoulders of Subban, and Weber. They, along with Picard, will have to play above their heads.
Add to the mix, the foot injury of Hamrlik that we don't have a time line on and it is looking like a bigger challenge everyday for the D corps.
What can weigh is not just the players lost, but the psychological loss as well. Players have to convince themselves everyday that the fight is possible and it is worth it in the end.
It is easy to say "I guess it is not our year". Any hint of that and the team is done.
So it was perhaps the most telling thing that Gauthier said at his news conference that the team is "all in".
They will have to be, because they won't make the post season with any passengers.
Let's face it though. It all comes down to the one thing that we have always known it comes down to: Carey Price.
If he is the Price that stopped five straight in the shootout, then all systems go.
If he is the Price who looked tired on the road trip, then no amount of surprisingly mature play from Weber or Subban, or shocking contributions from Pacioretty, Pouliot or Desharnais is going to make a difference.
For this team, it all comes down to the goalie.
Though a couple healthy blueliners couldn't hurt either.