You bring your expansion club into my house... MY HOUSE. What do you expect, Mr. Jacques Martin? Hmmm? You want some sort of easy night for your boys? A quick blast and scoot back down south for a week off? Like Confederate loyalists? After a paltry 6 straight nights of games? Me thinks I got it covered. Throw me your Hortons. Your Peltonens(!). Your Froliks. I will conquer them all with room to spare. You and your MSM compadres may argue the logic in trading away a talent like Cristobal...but I am the man now. I'm no Jim Carey, no Brent Johnson. Remember 1986? I don't. WHY CAN'T I WEAR 33? Everyone has us picked for Eastern Conference dominance. Kovy's getting grey up top? So what. Hamrlik played his first home game at Expo Hall? Chew on it. My backup is...wait...who IS my backup? Does not matter: I don't need no stinking backup. I'll play 82 games...plus 16...cuz that's all it will take. Come back next year, Mr. Martin. Just try to pull off your six games in six nights lunacy again. Did you seriously expect to walk away victorious? I will slam the door on your Matthias. Your Frolik. Your Horton. Your, um, Stewart. Yeah...that guy! At least next time. You take your prospect-strewn club back to Coral Springs. Make a team out of those kids. Enjoy the pizza and dogs at IncredibleICE. Good luck...I'll be here to prevent it! Haaa...ponder it: Here I sit, on top of the world, as goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens, and you, YOU, send your "team" back to South Florida - where I will go for pedicures between Cups - and they will scrimmage. And they will practice. And they will question their allegiance. And sustain the usual contraction talk.
And I'll be here, ruling over Mt. Stanley. More grapes, bitches!
The only thing in the way, JM, is their coach. And dammit, Mr. Maaartin, if you didn't grab a good one. Even I, starting goaltender for the Habs, if you weren't already aware, knows what this Pete guy is capable of. So I say to you now, JM, let him run his club, on the ice, the way it's supposed to be run. You're no threat to me, so this is a courtesy call. Stay out of it. I AM the Habs and no one needs to send my boys on crazy 14,000 mile treks to the wilderness. Or Edmonton. You may have your beaches, and Publix, and flip-flops to work, but I rule. And until you follow my lead, with apologies to his holiness Bob Gainey, you will falter. To paraphrase, "Let Your People Go...to Pete". On a similar subject, who's on your 3-Star list for this trip? Anthony Stewart (2 goals, and no chance of making the club), Ville Peltonen (for being in the shootout beyond all logic), and the Panther Laundry Guys (if I were on the team charter, this one's a no-brainer). Yikes.
No matter. I play in the center of the hockey universe. That town to the west of us be damned. I can shop for Youpi underoos - with a generous discount - at the same spot where Claude Lemieux shot high to the glove side of Mike Liut at 5:55 of overtime in game seven of the 1986 quarterfinals. And with a bit of name-dropping, I'll get an extra 5% off of that. There's this girl, you see, with a Russ Courtnall sweater...
So nice try tonight, Panthers of Florida. Looking forward to the next visit. Feel free to continue using Montreal as a stepping-stone for your juniors, as was the case tonight. Just don't tell anyone. You and me, JM. Making me look good. Tell you what, just to keep it fair, I'll let one slip for your boys in the Conference Final.