Random observations from the Canadiens season-opening 2-0 loss in Toronto:
Full marks to James Reimer for outduelling Carey Price, but when his defencemen weren’t blocking shots or keeping the Canadiens on the periphery, the Habs themselves made Reimer’s job that much easier by putting just about every quality scoring chance right in the Leafs goaltender’s bread basket…A potential turning point and nifty bit of coaching by Jacques Martin went by the wayside late in the second period, when the Leafs squandered a lengthy two man advantage and Martin not only made the right personnel choices, but called a time out so he could keep his best penalty killers on the ice for the entire duration of the 5 on 3…Andrei Kostitsyn was the Canadiens’ best player in the first period but had played his way from the first line to the third line by the end of the game. In other words, Kostitsyn is already in mid-season form…How is Mike Komisarek punching Brian Gionta in the head after the whistle not a penalty? I realize the referees miss calls every once in a while, but as professionals, they shouldn’t miss the obvious ones…The number of empty seats in Toronto at the beginning of the second and third periods never ceases to amaze me. The best I can figure is that those seats come with complimentary intermission sponge baths from Air Canada Center geisha girls.
Ted Bird can be heard on habstalkradio.com’s NHL Week in Review every Sunday morning at 10:30 beginning Oct. 16. Ted is also weekday morning show co-host on K103 Kahnawake (http://k103radio.com) and a sports editorial for CTV Montreal (http://ctvmontreal.ca)