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From the Branches: The Montreal Canadiens trying to become the pre-Matthews Maple Leafs

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It’s so similar it’s eerie.

NHL: Montreal Canadiens at Toronto Maple Leafs Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Today I was sitting in an 80 year old arena, freezing cold, while my son was at his hockey practice. I spent the time watching him work on his skating and passing and thought about all of the stupid things hockey has brought me. Saluteghazi, jerseys tossed on the ice compared to dead soldiers, and of course the waffles.

Look, I don’t control where my mind wanders to.

Then it came to how bad the Montreal Canadiens are, because there are two questions I get asked every morning by the kid. “Did the Canadiens lose last night” and “Are the Coyotes still winless?”. He’s only happy if the answers are yes. So combining the Canadiens and the waffles I wondered: What do you toss at a bad Habs team? So, of course, I asked twitter:

The Canadiens are following in the Leafs path, sadly (depending on your perspective) they’ve chosen to start way before the “draft lots of young players” part and are in the “delusional about how good you are” era we went through with JFJ, Cliff Fletcher and Brian Burke at the helm.

They’ve spent close to the cap on players, have brought in big contracts like Shea Weber, and extended Carey Price for so long they have no choice but to try and win.

Oh, also the team is becoming more focused on off-ice activities.

Good luck with the next decade Habs fans, when things look their worse, just remember: Shea Weber is on the cap with a $7.9 million cap hit until 2026!

Here are your links:

The Leafs' Hot Start Put Into Perspective - William Ord
William shares his thoughts on the start of the season.

The pros and cons of Claude Julien's zone defence system - Eyes On The Prize
Comparing Julien's system to Michel Therrien's and other well-known strategies to find out the source of some of the issues the Habs have had defensively.

Coyotes trade for Devils goalie Scott Wedgewood - Five For Howling
The Coyotes have added a sixth goalie to their roster, now what?

Esa Lindell Steadily Growing Into a Top Pair Defenseman - Defending Big D
The young Finnish blueliner isn’t flashy, but he is effective

Couple thoughts on the Oilers shooting percentage - The Copper & Blue
There's a lot of 0.00% players.

Systems Analyst: A Rifle from Victor Rask - Canes Country
Carolina’s much-maligned center scored the game-winning goal on Tuesday night in spectacular fashion.

WATCH: Ryan Reaves Scares Phil Kessel with Terrifying Clown Mask - PensBurgh
"Are you *bleeping* nuts?"

Down Goes Brown: Saturday storylines: Is it too early for a must-win?
We’ll also take an early look ahead to the deadline and draft lottery, and a look back to a time in the distant past when the Penguins had the best player in the world and won two straight Cups. The more things change…

Flyers at Maple Leafs recap: Flyers bounce back on Hockey Night in Canada - Broad Street Hockey
The Flyers got help up and down the lineup tonight and received a great effort from Brian Elliott as they ended their two-game skid in Toronto.

Enjoy your day everyone!