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Habs coach doesn’t blame ‘suicide pass’ for Eller check

May 2, 2013, 10:48 PM EDT

raphaeldiaz Getty Images

While there were plenty of debates about whether Eric Gryba deserves a suspension for his hit on Lars Eller, people seemed pretty unified about the Raphael Diaz pass that seemingly put Eller in a vulnerable position.

(San Jose Sharks defenseman Jason Demers wasn’t shy about calling it a “suicide pass.”)

Habs head coach Michel Therrien didn’t throw Diaz, 27, under the bus to the Montreal Gazette’s Dave Stubbs, though.

“I’m not going to blame Raphael,” Therrien said.

That’s as much as Therrien would say about the hit out of fear of being fined.

The Canadiens coach has developed a reputation as a taskmaster over the years, but he didn’t beat up on his team for a 4-2 loss, either.

He said he was “very happy with the way we played tonight,” which makes sense since the Habs fired 50 shots on goal against a keyed-in Craig Anderson.

  1. graymalkin26 - May 2, 2013 at 10:52 PM

    That was one of many bad plays made by Diaz. He plays soft and coughs the puck up when someone makes so much as a face at him.

    • valoisjoeybfeld69 - May 3, 2013 at 7:01 AM

      Diaz and Gorges were equally bad tonight. And damn right, Diaz made a horrendous pass and should be blamed for putting his teammate in such a vulnerable position. Tinordi played well and is going to be a very good d man in the years to come. He has to learn to manage his exuberance which causes him to overplay in certain situations, and when you do that at the NHL level you get burnt.

    • valoisjoeybfeld69 - May 3, 2013 at 7:04 AM

      BTW, did anyone really expect the coach to publicly blame Diaz? You can be certain that there is going to be a conversation between Diaz and Therrien & the D coach today.

  2. packerswin96 - May 2, 2013 at 11:50 PM

    Diaz was brutal tonight, maybe ended Eller’s career, and cost the 3rd goal, plus gave puck away couple of other times, Drewiskie maybe for game 2?

    • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 2, 2013 at 11:55 PM

      Hockey players careers do not end from broken noses, lost teeth and cuts.

      • packerswin96 - May 3, 2013 at 12:05 AM

        He hit his face flush on the ice, at very least has concussion. And we all know how they can go! (see Marc Savard)

      • andrewproughcfe - May 3, 2013 at 12:37 AM

        I still don’t understand why they don’t want to wear full face guards – at least something that covers as much of the face as an NFL helmet?

        When you consider that your face is always just a couple of wobbly skate-blades away from planting into ice as hard as concrete; and you throw in the occasional 100-mph slapshot to the face or stick to the face – why the hell would you not want full protection?

  3. zdh8771 - May 3, 2013 at 12:53 AM

    andrewproughcfe players actually aren’t allowed to wear full face protection unless they have some sort of facial injury.

    It’s kind of stupid IMHO. I’ve always worn full face protection. But the issue is if not everyone wears it, then the players with full face protection could use it to their advantage. There is also an issue of injuring another player if say a player has a cage on and accidentally Knicks someone in the face with it.

    So unless the league makes full face protection mandatory (which I doubt would ever happen,as it wouldn’t go over well with the players) it will stay an issue.

    • matt14gg - May 3, 2013 at 8:58 AM

      The rejection of full face shields is directly related to TV and trying to sell the game to the fans. The league believes (rightly so) that fans want to see players’ faces, and be able to allow fans to see reactions and also get to know what players look like. i don’t think you are ever going to see full face shields, though I do think you are going to see half shields on all players cuz the league believes it will reduce fighting, even if just by a little bit.

  4. valoisvipers - May 3, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    A round of full cages for everyone.I’m buying.

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