Lafleur takes shot at Habs

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:26 AM ET

The man known as The Flower has created a big stink in Montreal.

In a post-game interview with RDS following the Montreal Canadiens 3-0 loss to the Buffalo Sabres Saturday, Lafleur, one of the most popular figures ever to lace up a pair of skates for the Habs, claimed the modern day Canadiens are nothing more than a team of four fourth lines.

"Guy is Guy," coach Guy Carbonneau told reporters in Montreal yesterday. "This is not his first comment.

"Everybody knows we have better players than that."

Lafleur, who, ironically, is a team ambassador for the Canadiens, made his comments after watching the Habs drop both ends of a home-and-home series with the Sabres.

"We didn't play well on Saturday, we didn't score goals, but when a team is number one on the power play in the National Hockey League, I think you have more than four fourth lines," captain Saku Koivu said. "Obviously everyone is entitled to their opinion."

Agree with him or not, Lafleur's bold statement might just be yet another incentive for the Habs to get fired up for tonight's meeting with the rival Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

While panicking fans in Toronto are talking as if there should be public executions for Leafs management types in front of City Hall, the Canadiens are dealing with their own cache of issues.

Lafleur's rants notwithstanding, the big news out of Habs camp involves the demotion to the third line of struggling forward Michael Ryder, who now finds himself flanking Kyle Chipchura and Mathieu Dandenault.

Bumped up to the top unit with Saku Koivu and Christopher Higgins will be second-year winger Guillaume Latendresse.

Rookie goaltender Carey Price, who backstopped the Habs to a 4-3 overtime victory over the Leafs two weeks ago, once again will get the start for Montreal.


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