Habs fans, pride & dejection
Montreal Canadiens fans experienced a mixture of pride and dejection on Thursday night after watching their heroes get eliminated from the NHL playoffs.
The Habs, the only Canadian team to make this year's post-season, saw their Stanley Cup dreams extinguished as the New York Rangers eked out a 1-0 victory in Game 6 of their Eastern Conference final.
Although the game was played in New York, the Bell Centre in Montreal was packed once again as the decisive matchup was broadcast on giant screens for a sold-out crowd.
Fans emerging from the arena after the game were obviously disappointed but there was no trouble downtown.
Helmeted, riot-equipped police stood watch along Ste-Catherine Street but even many of them didn't stay around too long.
It was in sharp contrast to the final game of Montreal's previous series, against the Boston Bruins, when police lined the street to protect businesses from rowdy fans.
On Thursday night, although there was the occasional vocal outburst from unhappy or frustrated fans, Montrealers appeared to accept the defeat as they quietly headed home.
Emilie Quilliams, 18, said her disappointment at the playoff exit was tempered by seeing the Canadiens reach the semifinals.
"I'm still proud of them," she said. "For them to come to the second-to-last round of the playoffs, it's something that we haven't seen in quite a while, so I was really happy for them."
Many fans were already looking ahead to next season, particularly after a gritty playoff performance that included goaltender Dustin Tokarski filling in admirably for starter Carey Price, who was injured early in the Rangers series.
Joe Kutlu, 40, heaped praise galore on Tokarski and urged the Canadiens to sign him up.
"They bring up a goalie who is a legend right now and he's going to be known and I'm guessing a lot of players are really going to admire him for years to come," Kutlu said.
Jean-Francois Belisle echoed the sentiments of many fans as he looked at the season with a sense of accomplishment.
"I'm proud of the Canadiens' season, I'm not angry," he said. "Obviously, it would have been great to go further but it was a good match, a good series and good playoffs."
Comments on this story are pre-moderated. Before they appear, comments are reviewed by moderators to ensure they meet our submission guidelines. Keep it clean, keep it civil, keep it truthful, stay on topic and be responsible. Comments are open and welcome for three days after the story is published. We reserve the right to close comments before then. Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of Castanet, but only of the comment writer.
Read more Sports News
- Construction hampers businessKelowna
- Sex assault trial continuesPenticton / S. Okanagan
- Accused says he didn't act aloneBC
- Bike lanes not parking lanesKelowna
- Kelowna Rockets
- West Kelowna Warriors
- Penticton Vees
- Vernon Vipers
- Kelowna Chiefs
- Penticton Lakers
- Okanagan College Coyotes
- Kelowna Minor Hockey
- Westside Minor Hockey
- Penticton Minor Hockey
- Vernon Minor Hockey
- Winfield Minor Hockey
- Pepsi Premier Hockey League
- Kelowna Ball Hockey
- Okanagan Ball Hockey
- Penticton Ball Hockey
- Sunplex Ball Hockey
- Field Hockey Okanagan
- Okanagan Rockets
- Lake Country Old-Timers Hockey Association
- Orchard City Hockey League
- Kelowna Heat Spring Hockey
- Okanagan All Stars Hockey Club
- Knights of West Kelowna
- BCHL | KIJHL | WHL | NHL
- Kelowna Women's Soccer
- Kelowna Men's Soccer
- Okanagan Challenge
- Kelowna United FC
- Central Okanagan Youth
- Kelowna Youth Soccer
- Westside Youth Soccer
- Rutland Youth Soccer
- Lake Country Youth Soccer
- Penticton Soccer Club
- South Okanagan Similkameen Youth Soccer
- Thompson Okanagan Football Club
- Sunplex Futsal League
- Pepsi Premier Soccer League
- CSA | FIFA | MLS
- Kelowna AquaJets
- Liquid Lightning Swim Club
- Ogopogo Summer Swim Club
- Okanagan Masters Swim Club
- Kelowna Masters Swim Club
- Kelowna Badminton Club
- The Penticton Yacht & Tennis
- OK Mission Tennis
- Lakeview Heights Tennis
- Vernon Tennis Association
- Squash BC Okanagan League
- ESPN Tennis
Does your local team have a website?
Email us to add your community sports link.
Cover your team's games! Write up a story and email us [email protected] for publication here.