The context is very different, but the Montreal canadiens, participating in the qualification round of the next series, could take part in the playoffs while playing for a record of ,500 or less for the first time since 1997.
Indeed, the nostalgic, the Habs will remember that 23 years ago, the troupe, led by head coach Mario Tremblay had taken part in the series despite a record of 31-36-15 in the regular season. Then having finished eighth in the ranking of the Association of the East, the Canadian had faced in the first round, goalkeeper, Martin Brodeur and the New Jersey Devils. The montreal club had tilted into five meetings in this series 4 of 7. The only victory of CH occurred in the fourth game when defender Patrice Brisebois scored in the third period of extension, in a gain of 4 to 3.
Memories of 1951
In plunging in the history of the Habs, it is interesting to note that the team had reached the Stanley Cup final in 1951, despite a record of 25-30-15 during the regular schedule. It was, however, at the time of the six clubs original.
Under the orders of Dick Irvin, the CH was, however, surprised the mighty Detroit Red Wings (44-13-13) in the semi-final before losing in seven games against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the ultimate duel.
The arrival of Lemaire
The course of 1984 was another memorable one for the Canadian, galvanized the promotion of the assistant to Jacques Lemaire in replacement of Bob Berry at the helm of the team with 17 games left in the season. Despite a record of 35-40-5, Montreal was able to participate in the series by virtue of the fourth division Adams. Propelled by the unexpected goalie Steve Penney, the Habs had then defeated the Boston Bruins and the Quebec Nordiques before losing against the New York Islanders in the conference finals.
Ever the Canadian, even when there were only six training sessions, managed to win the Stanley cup after presenting a record of ,500 or less in the regular season. In 1986, for example, the CH had posted a record of 40-33-7.