MONTREAL – In today’s notebook, Martin gets his troops ready for battle, Gill talks it out and Gorges sets up Subban-Marchand: Round 2.
The shake up: Habs assistant coach Randy Ladouceur has spent the past two games behind the bench, handling the defense in a more hands-on manner these days. Having played under Ladouceur for two seasons in Toronto, Hal Gill already had a pretty good idea what to expect from him during games.
“It’s been good. I’m a little familiar with him. It’s a change, but he’s a guy who talks a lot and he shows his passion and hopefully guys can respond to that,” described Gill of Ladouceur, who also coached Erik Cole for three seasons as an assistant in Carolina. “We have a lot of communication back there which is always very helpful.”
The dance continues: After picking up coincidental holding penalties on Thursday night, P.K. Subban and Brad Marchand exited the box and immediately earned themselves another two minutes for delay of game. Once they were done serving their time, they hit the ice and dropped the gloves and finally went toe-to-toe. The two may be buddies dating back to their days winning gold together for Canada at the 2008 World Junior Hockey Championships in the Czech Republic, but Josh Gorges isn’t expecting them to rekindle their friendship on the ice on Saturday night.
“I don’t know, but I doubt it. Only because it’s not just P.K. and Marchand; it’s Boston and Montreal,” explained the Habs blue-liner who finished his night with an assist and three blocked shots in Boston. “The rivalry is intense and the emotions are always running high. I’m sure they’re going to go at each other again and finish their checks and be hard on each other and the same goes for both sides. We’re expecting the same type of game from both sides and from both players.”
Fight to the finish: The reigning Stanley Cup Champions may be in last place in the Eastern Conference with a 3-6-0 record this season, but Jacques Martin knows better than to underestimate the Boston Bruins.
“It’s a big rivalry and it’s a big two points and tonight is going to be even more intense. We have to be prepared to battle right from the start,” warned the Habs bench boss. “Both teams have been struggling and neither of us are happy with where we are. We have to be ready for war.”
Shauna Denis is a writer for canadiens.com.
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