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Appropriate response

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens

UNIONDALE – The Habs give their take on Claude Julien’s comments and look towards their match-up with the Islanders.

Claude Julien may have had a few choice words for the Habs after Sunday night’s game in Boston, but as far as the Canadiens are concerned, that just means they’re doing their job. When asked about some of Julien’s less-than-flattering comments on Monday afternoon, the Habs’ head coach couldn’t help but grin.

“I’ve known Claude for a long time and I’ve been coaching teams against him for a long time too. To me, those comments that he made were ridiculous and I think he was very frustrated to have lost that game. Claude can concentrate on his team and I’ll concentrate on my own,” offered Michel Therrien following the Canadiens morning skate at Nassau Coliseum, before further expanding on the subject.

Michel Therrien

“Our goal is to play a style of game that we feel will best bring us success. That’s what’s really important for me,” continued the Habs’ bench boss. “We need to be able to show up for every game and for us that means playing an aggressive style of hockey and controlling the match. The players have been paying a lot of attention to the details and they deserve a lot of credit.”

As a big part of the Canadiens success so far this season – not to mention Sunday’s win over the Bs – Max Pacioretty was clearly on the same wavelength as his coach when it came to explaining Julien’s postgame outburst.

“Jealousy,” offered Pacioretty, who, after collecting 14 points in his last nine games, and seven in the last week, woke up to the news that he had been named the NHL’s first star of the week. “We’re at the top right now and reading comments like that is awesome. If we’re in last place, they wouldn’t be saying anything about us, but we’re in first place and it’s the best feeling in the world.”

While the Habs are clearly riding high after extending their point-streak to 11 games on Sunday night, they’re also well aware that the Islanders are waiting in the wings to slow them down on Tuesday. But as Josh Gorges was quick to point out, yesterday’s win is in the bank and all that matters now is the present and the future.

“That’s kind of been the way we’ve taken this whole season. Whatever we did yesterday, today is old news. We haven’t accomplished anything yet and we don’t have anything to hang our hats on,” imparted Gorges, referencing the fact that more than half of the 2012-13 calendar still remains to be played.

“Sure, yesterday was a big win against a good team, but just like we did when we lost against Pittsburgh, we said, ‘Today’s a new day and a new challenge.’ Forget about what happened and move on,” added the assistant captain. “This is no different – we’re back to work preparing for the next team and we have to make sure that we’re playing our best again.”

The Habs face off against the Islanders when the puck drops at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday night in Uniondale.

Justin Fragapane is a writer for

Words from the room: March 4, 2013
Max Pacioretty named the First star of the week
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