Monday, December 07, 2009

And now for the next 100 years

The next generation of Habitants, take to the ice tonight fresh off their Friday night showpiece of a game, all part of the festivities celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Montreal Canadiens.

Friday night's show was done as only the Habs seem to be able to do, with the glory of a Roman procession, stirring the emotions of generations of Canadiens fans across the land.

They brought out many of the old familiar faces for one more photograph, retired a few more numbers to the rafters (which must make sweater selection a rather easy process in Montreal, here's your numbers take what's left!) and provided the spiritual lift that seemed to have the ghosts of the past skating beside the workmen of today in their rouge, blanc et bleu uniforms.

Boston were mere spectators to Friday's game, and considering they kept out of sight until just the very end of the lengthy pre game procession, they still seemed to offer little in the way of resistance to a Montreal team that looked as though the Rocket, Le Gros Bill or Howie Morenz were next up for a shift. Mike Cammalleri playing the role of the Rocket, seemingly scoring at will against the Bruins on Friday.

With a weekend of other social engagements to engage them, the Canadiens of today would spend a bit more time with ancient combatants of the Order of the Hab, the coaches and management no doubt hoping that some of that hard earned success of the past will by osmosis be transferred to today's would be heroes.

By far, when it comes to honouring the game and the tradition of the home side, there is no equal to the Canadiens, every moment of Friday night was choreographed, every word a measured tribute to the game and what it meant to be a Hab. Though it has been a few years now since they've been able to add to the legendary tales of the Canadiens.

The torch as they say, has now been passed for the next hundred years, a weighty responsibility for a current squad that has struggled much more than they have succeeded in this anniversary year.

Still, with the ghosts of the Forum now apparently, grudgingly it seems coming to terms with the new home, the haunting has begun, at least for one night, just ask the Bruins, they probably felt a chill on Friday.

The new era however begins today, with the slumping Flyers (again the ghosts are at work) in town to ring in the new century of Habs hockey.
With the year long celebrations behind them (finally) perhaps Montreal can begin to concentrate on the future and creating a few moments to come of their own.
Otherwise these night's to remember will only go to re-enforce the fact that it's been a few years since the Habs have been as dominant as they once were.

Montreal Gazette-- Habs said: 'We have a surprise'
Montreal Gazette-- For Habs' O'Byrne, foresight is 20/20
Montreal Gazette-- Habs wallowing in the past with no thought to the future
Montreal Gazette-- Canadiens lay B-day beating on Bruins
Montreal Gazette-- Habs party a team booster
Montreal Gazette-- No party without Carey Price's heroics
Montreal Gazette-- Historic birthday bash for Canadiens
Globe and Mail-- Canadiens greats honoured in Montreal
Globe and Mail-- Habs celebrate 100th, romp over Bruins

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