Kukla's Korner Hockey
by The Upper Canadien on 09/14/10 at 10:24 AM ET
Pierre Gauthier met the media yesterday and his words on the captaincy were interesting. Gauthier acknowledged that a captain will be named before the season begins, and he seemed to praise, amongst others, Mike Cammalleri for his leadership last season. Gauthier also noted that the Canadiens had a better idea of their identity and, after last season’s playoff run, what they are able to accomplish. Personally, I wish people had probed more on the idea of change – after all, the Canadiens changed most of their scouting department, their assistant GM, their strength and conditioning coach, and due to Guy Boucher’s leaving much of the AHL organization changed as well. Gauthier did mention this and said it was normal when coaches leave for many different positions in that realm to shift.
But why all the scouting changes? Gauthier was Gainey assistant for many years – if all these changes needed to be made, why didn’t Gainey make them? If Gauthier is the camel, what was the straw? The Canadiens draft record has, for the past few years, been fairly strong: no super stars, but many solid NHLers. Why make such sweeping changes to amateur scouting when this is the case?
And why was Lorne Goldberg fired after just one season doing strength conditioning the Habs? Did I miss a rash of serious injuries? Seemed pretty strong and conditioned to me (ok, sans Markov).
Gauthier is a wily fellow. He likes to avoid questions when he can, and like his predecessor, he is anything but media friendly. This isn’t a new normal, after all Gainey liked to avoid direct answers as well. But wouldn’t it, for once, be nice to just get some solid, basic answers and descriptions of why decisions have been made?
As for the captaincy, the media seems to have narrowed the list to four: Cammalleri, Markov, Gionta, Gorges. If Markov really said no to the idea last year, I have to think he’s off the list. Gorges, probably my choice, is still looked at as fairly young in some circles. That leaves Gionta, who played under many great leaders through his New Jersey playing days, and the aforementioned Cammalleri.
We’ll know soon enough.
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