Join me now as we close our eyes and imagine what it would be like if a man from the future somehow appeared in Montreal back in the days when The Rocket was scoring like crazy and leading Les Habitants to eight Stanley Cups:
Future Man: Hi, I’m from the future.
Old-time Canadiens Fan: Eh?
FM: I said I’m from the future.
OCF: Sacre Bleu! Are my beloved Canadiens still playing in the NHL?
OCF: Bien! Did they win La Coupe Stanley this year?
FM: Well, they playoffs were going on right when I left, but it didn’t look good for Montreal…
OCF: How is this? They made it into the playoffs, no?
FM: Oh, yeah, sure–they’re in the playoffs. They were a top seed in their division; number two in the conference.
OCF: Ah, bien sûr! But you say they do not look good. How can this be? They are Les Habitants!
FM: Yeah, they are…but they can’t beat the Tampa Bay Lightning.
OCF: Eh? Qu’est-ce que c’est? What do you mean? They are struck by lightning? They drown in a bay?
FM: No, no–the Tampa Bay Lightning. There’s a team that plays in Tampa, Florida. They’re called the Lightning.
OCF: This is a baseball team, these Lightning?
FM: No, they’re a hockey team.
OCF: You are drunk, no? Who would put a hockey team in Florida?
FM: Actually, there’s two teams there now…then, I should say.
FM: Do what?
OCF: Non, deux…like ‘two’. But what does this have to do with Les Canadiens?
FM: Well, Montreal can’t beat the Lightning. They’ve lost all six times they’ve played this season, including the first two games of their playoff series.
OCF: Tiens! What you say, it is not possible. Montreal, lose to a hockey team from Florida? Six straight times. It cannot be!
FM: It be. Sorry.
OCF: Mon Dieu! What kind of world is this? I cannot see this future of yours.
Old-time Canadiens Fan grabs the heaping plate of poutine from the table in front of him and smothers himself to death with it.
FM: Uh-oh. Gotta go.
Future Man disappears with a sound very like a charging centerman burying the opposing goalie in a snow shower.
End scene–and probably season, for Montreal, at least.
Sorry, Canada; looks like no Cup for you again.