Yessir I'm back!
Back for another jam-packed, exciting and entertaining NHL season.
So much to talk about even before the season starts. But what better way to make my return than on the day the Habs take their physicals in Brossard and officially open the pre-season.
What a crazy offseason, from the airplane crash in Russia killing an entire KHL squad, to the untimely deaths of Belak, Rypien and Boogaard, to Michael Ryder showing off the cup in Newfoundland.
I told you the hockey karma was out of step with the Bruins winning the cup, and so it's no surprise we had probably the most tragic offseasons on record.
Now it's up to the Canadiens to right the ship and make it all better.
And you know what that means...
The Habs are going deep this year, and in my mind, they will be the 2012 Stanley Cup Champions. On paper at least, this is probably the best team Montreal has iced since their last cup in '93. With the addition of power forward Eric Cole; a healthy MaxPac, Gorges and gulp... hopefully Markov; the continuing improvement of our 2 young thoroughbreds Carey "my man" Price and P.K. Subban; and a possible rebound year for Scotty Gomez -- this team could have the right combination of young and experienced talent to go all the way. Hopefully the team stays healthy. Newbie Yemelin gives us much-needed grit in the d-zone; Eller, Desharnais, Pacioretty and Kostitsyn will be battling for second line minutes; and returning leaders Gionta and Gill will help the team navigate the ups and downs.
Plus GM Gauthier still has another 4 million bucks to boot against the cap to go out and get someone to push us over the top when that time comes before February.
I like this team.
Myself, I had a terrific offseason and come into it renewed, revitalized and in shape, having lost 30 pounds after completing the "Insanity" workout regimen -- one of those crazy 6 days of 7 intense fitness plans, from the makers of P90X which a lot of folks know. Hard man, very hard. But happy I stuck with it.
As a result, I had a Timmy Thomas type season in my summer hockey league, posting the best numbers of my career. I'm a goalie, if you don't already know.
However, my team lost in the finals, and to my surprise I found out after the fact that one of the players on the opposing side was John Bartlett -- the new voice of the Habs on TSN radio. The guy scored on me in the first game of our two game final. Phooey. But I won't hold it against him. John was the voice of Toronto's AHL Marlies but now moves over to become the voice for the Canadiens, his boyhood team. Supposedly he's the second coming of Danny Gallivan. We'll see about that. But good luck John, call 'em good, call 'em hard but most importantly, call 'em wins!!!
More to come folks...