Where you at? You all jumped back on the bandwagon realllll quick.
I have long stopped listening to sports talk radio in Montreal, half of the hosts are not qualified to do their job. Some are good at creating conversations and know how to engage fans while still providing knowledgeable assessment and analysis, then there’s Tony Marinaro. The Tony Marinaro show seems to be where all the haters and trolls come out from under their bridges and target number 1, Carey Price.
This is not limited to strictly this show but it is the primary culprit in my experience. Like I said I have long since stopped listening to him so maybe he has smartened up but this is not a personal attack on Tony. I am calling out the vocal minority because the larger, more intelligent Habs fan base knows that this is the Carey Price the Habs paid $10.5M to. So on behalf of the silent majority:
“Dear Vocal Minority
Personally, I knew Price was on his game this series when he punched Malkin in the back in front of the net. It could not have been more than 5 minutes into the game, but just seeing that fight for positioning in front of the net was a welcoming sign. The best part about Playoff Carey Price? We haven’t even reached his third level of evolution, Elimination Game Carey Price. And yes that was a Pokemon reference that our boy Eagle at master control should appreciate.
In Price’s last nine elimination games he has an astounding 1.11 GAA and 0.956 SV% dating back to the Habs Game 4 sweep win against the Lightning in the 2014 Playoffs. Since then, this sample size includes his run at the 2014 Soochi Olympics where Price stopped 55 shots in the semis and the Gold Medal game letting in 0 goals. Yes 0 goals in best on best hockey.
This is not to say that Carey Price has been the best possible version of himself over the last couple of seasons but he set a ridiculously high bar for himself. Since his Hart season in 2014-15 Price has dealt with injuries, lack luster play and more importantly a mediocre roster in front of him. Having a goalie like Price is a double edged sword because he is too good for the Canadiens to fully commit to a tank season which limits the potential upside of draft picks. This could not be more apparent by the fact that the last time the Habs selected third overall was the season that Price was injured.
To the fans that have an issue with Price’s contract, fine I will slightly concede but let me ask you a question. Are you of the opinion that the Habs need to overpay Free Agents to finally get one to come play here? If so, then pick a side of the fence because you cannot have it both ways. If you answered no to that question then I guess you are content with mediocrity. Despite anyone’s opinions, Carey Price is not only one of the best goalies in the NHL today, he is one of the best goalies any of us will ever watch play. Having a player like Price locked up long term is part of how you attract big name Free Agents along with overpaying them. Well we overpaid the best goalie in the league to keep him here, so why is it not okay this time? Grass is always greener I guess.
For the majority of you who understand how good Carey is, I apologize. When it comes to Free Agency, Montreal already battles with Income Taxes and a heavy media presence that most NHL player’s prefer not to deal with. Being labeled a fan base that shits on their franchise player cannot be a third strike against the Canadiens organization when trying to attract other players. It is a rare to find a player in the modern NHL that is fine with losing 67.25% of their paycheque (taxes + 2019-20 escrow) to live in -30 degree weather for six months. It is even more rare to find a player with Carey’s skill who wants to be here by his own choice.
So to the haters who can’t seem to get out of their own way, start appreciating or keep walking. The rest of us don’t need your negativity in our lives.