Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Canadiens' fans have seen this movie before

The last time Bob Gainey (can do no wrong apparently) fired a coach in the middle of a winning season - it was our own Claude Julien.

James Murphy over at NHL.com points out exactly this today, as Julien was axed by Gainey (who took over) in 2005. The result? A first round exit from the playoff that they were already in line to make.

Julien told reporters "It's never fun to hear that one of your colleagues has been let go,...When it comes to that, we're very supportive of each other." Obviously this is despite the "behind the bench" antics we saw over the last 21 months of hockey between Montreal and Boston, including some very heated screaming matches from bench to bench during last season's playoffs. Maybe Claude will buy Guy an appletini to make him feel better!

Seriously though. Of course Julien is sympathetic. Forgetting about the simple concept that coaches have respect for one another, especially those who've worked for the same GM, it's worth noting that Julien also got fired during a winning season AGAIN in New Jersey. I'd like to personally thank the Devils for that moronic move. I guess it doesn't matter who coaches them - as long as it's not Jacques Lemaire, who, as i've noted repeatedly in this space, ruined hockey for 10 years - but we're very glad to have the big bald man behind our bench.

The real issue here worth noting is Gainey's behaviour and the cohesion of our blue blanc et rouge rivals. They bring in Larocque and then tell him he's not wanted because the coach doesn't like tough guys? Only they follow that up by bringing a total Goon up to fight Chara for one shift? There's a littany of examples like this, including the firing of a guy with a WINNING RECORD, that really just says to me - a passionate observer - that they aren't together as an organization, much less a team.

My point? This is not new to Canadiens fans and as much as this writer likes to see them cry, this is just sad. The league is at its best when the marquee franchises are well run, and i am simply not convinced that this is the case anymore in Quebec. Let's hope they right the ship for a few more weeks, because i was really looking forward to watching them lose in the playoffs!


  1. Nah, I'd much rather they fall apart completely and not even make the playoffs.

  2. fair enough...
    i actually prefer to be the ones who knock them out though. Just like i prefer the red sox to beat the yanks. It's fun watching them miss a year now and again, but overall...i like beating their asses.

  3. I think I have to agree with Cornelius on this one, though I would also take much pleasure in dispatching them from the playoffs.

    Quick note... the call-up fight was actually Henry vs Thornton, not Chara.

  4. right you are, Bastahd.

    This is why we know better than to hastily post when we should be working.

  5. But I can't make dick jokes at work. Something about harassment or whatever ...

  6. Ideally I'd like them to come in 8th, so we could destroy them in 4 games and end that centennial season with a nice long handshake. On their ice. Assholes.

    But barring that dreamy scenario, I'd rather they just bow out completely. The league needs the money from Rangers & Pens games, and the exposure in markets like Carolina and Florida, and Buffalo just needs the money period.

  7. Ladies, you might like this...