The “Price” is Wrong

Just when you thought the Montreal Canadiens' dreadful season couldn't get any worse, Carey Price had to open his mouth.

For those who may not be aware, during the second period of a Game 4 loss to the Bruins, Carey Price made a simple save on a dump in shot. The fans cheered Price sarcastically because he had already allowed 3 goals. The cheering caused the Habs goaltender to throw his hands to the air in disgust.

Later in a press conference, one of Price's comments was, "Guys are playing hard, we are doing everything we can and things weren't going our way. We started having people turning on us in our own rink. It's kind of hard to put up with."

Days after the Canadiens being swept out of the playoffs, I began to contemplate Price's comment more. Initially, I agreed with Price that the fans were too hard on the Habs' goaltender. But now, as I have better begun to digest what Price said, I completely disagree with him.

Ever since Price became a Montreal Canadien, fans have been praising the young goaltender and believing he would be a solid goaltender for years to come. Expectations have been high on Price as they should be, especially heading into this season. In this, the Canadiens' Centennial Season, a season dedicated to celebrating the rich history of the franchise, fans were hopeful that the Canadiens might capture the Stanley Cup. They were also hoping that Carey Price would grab the reigns and become the permanent starting goaltender.

Carey Price's regular season record of 23 wins and 16 losses, coupled with a .905 save percentage, is decent, but he struggled mightily in the playoffs. While some of Price's struggles can be directly attributed to the defense, it doesn't explain his awful stats. In four losses, he had a goal against average of 4.11 and a save percentage of 0.78.

But back to Price's comment.

Price is angry that the fans were hard on the Montreal Canadiens. Apparently, Price's feelings were "hurt" by the sarcastic jeers.

Excuse me if I don't shed a tear for Carey Price.

Price is soon to become a multi-million dollar player, earning more money that he could ever dream of while playing a sport he loves. Heck, pay me that much money and I don't care who boos me.

The comments by Price also show a high level of immaturity. Price is a player that has the confidence of his coaching staff to lead the team to higher levels.

So, as a leader, what does he talk about after the Canadiens get swept by the Bruins? He complains about the harsh treatment of the fans.

Price needs to realize what it means to be a leader. He should have manned up after the game and admitted that his play wasn't good enough to win. Price should have not even brought the fan issue up. If Carey Price is to become the true leader of this team, he needs to improve his attitude, so that he will learn from a loss and become all the more better for it.

Now, don't get me wrong here. If there is a fan that is getting violent with Price or verbally assaulting him, then that fan is definitely wrong. I am no way condoling violence against professional athletes, but in this scenario, it seems like Price is merely angry about fans booing.

Maybe Carey Price thinks he is in the unique situation where fans have booed a team in their own stadium because they were playing poorly.

Living in Canada and being an avid fan of the Canadian Football League, I know first-hand that booing is a large part of a game. The difference in CFL from NHL, however, is that the players are not making a lot of money. Many of these players work jobs during the offseason because the salaries are not that high. And on many nights, these players will get booed during a game if they are playing badly. While these players might be a bit upset, they don't go on tantrums and complain about poor treatment from the fans.

Booing is a part of sports, and if you think about, real life, as well.

Sure, your boss isn't going to boo you if you make a mistake at work, but he definitely won't be happy with you. Learning to take criticism and become all the better for it is an important part of life, and something that Carey Price would do well to learn.

To close, I'd like to pose this question to Carey Price.

Your Montreal Canadiens just get swept by the rival Boston Bruins during the teams Centennial Season in what was supposed to be a wondrous year ... what did you expect, applause?

Jonathan Hamelin contributes articles on the NBA, NFL and NHL. Being an avid fan of the Canadian Football League, Jonathan writes two columns on the CFL, Rider Report Card and CFL Buzz.

Comments and Conversation

May 4, 2009

McK:

I have a few comments in reaction to that:
No CFL player can compare their experience to being a Canadiens player that is booed. 82 game regular season, always sold out home games. Insane press coverage and speculation about personal lives of the players. It’s too much to take and take and take and never give back. And lying down and taking it would’ve been a mistake.

Price responded to a question. He was asked about the gesture and explained why he did it. He said that he wanted to show the fans that booing doesn’t always help. True? Yep. And Bob Gainey himself called what had happened “bullying” from the fans. Price’s comments about that were honest and challenged the fans directly. Something the rabid habs fans deserve.

The booing Price had to endure, albeit because of his performance, was not criticism. It was abuse.

No he shouldn’t have expected applause… but some Habs fans did give him that after the game. The ones who understand how old he is, how hard he worked, how much that team was up against this year, and that he’ll be the future of the franchise.

And I’m glad they did. Cause if the boo-ers had their way, everyone who had a bad year would just leave town. Ryder anyone?

May 5, 2009

Jonathan:

I do agree with some of what you’re saying. While perhaps using CFL Players wasn’t the best example, there are many other big market cities where players get booed, yet how often do you see players complaining about the fans. Price may have been challenging the fans, but that isn’t going to stop people from booing. I guess what I was trying to say was, Price should have shrugged off the boos and just focused on what he could have done better in the series.

Thanks for the comment

May 13, 2009

Jennifer:

will u give him a brake!!!!!!
he is only 21, it is not as easy as it seems he is trying!!!!!!!!!!
ya he had a bad season……….but he can turn around he know’s what he did wrong and he won’t do it again. he is my favorite and he is a great goalie just give him a another chance!!!!!!
Jennifer

May 17, 2009

Jonathan:

Thanks for the comment Jennifer. I was not saying that Carey Price had a bad season or writing him off. I was merely saying that in this situation, Price reacted to easily to the fans. Players should be used to booing at this stage in their career, it is part of the game. Once again, if you paid me that much money id listen to a couple of boos.

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