The Upper Canadien
by The Upper Canadien on 03/29/12 at 06:45 PM ET
It’s a decent news day in Montreal. As you know, Pierre Gauthier is out as Habs GM after, arguably, their most disappointing season ever. Also out is former GM and Senior Advisor Bob Gainey. Before we go anywhere, a quick note:
Thank you Bob Gainey.
Bob Gainey built a 1st place team in 2008 that had a lot of talent but couldn’t get it done in the playoffs. He drafted some key pieces. His work got the Habs within 2 wins of their first Stanley Cup appearance in 16 years. Moreover, Bob Gainey did much of this while fighting through the grief of losing his child, in a life that has been marred by tragedy, yet continued to serve the team he loved. Yes, Bob Gainey failed to bring a championship, and yes, Bob Gainey made mistakes. But it’s never nice to see someone lose their job, especially not someone who cared so much.
Now, onto the next chapter. What next for Les Canadiens? The airwaves are burning up with callers. Left and right I hear that the new General Manager “must” be French. Must be French? Why? Was Pierre Gauthier not French? Can we not choose the best man available? French could result in more of, well, this. Surely you don’t want that, do you?
Patrick Roy, Claude Loiselle, Francois Giguere, Julien Brisebois, Jim Nill, I’ve heard many names, all of them competent, all of them qualified in some way, shape or form. But the man who should fill the General Manager’s role, in my mind, is a native Montrealer, fluently bilingual, and a very controversial suggestion. I wrote about it two months ago, but I’m going to state it again:
Pierre McGuire is my choice as the next GM of the Montreal Canadiens.
Why? McGuire is an expert talent evaluator. He’s a scout at heart. He knows the players inside and out. He’s got NHL experience. He’s won Stanley Cups. Sure, he’s never been a GM, but he’s declined many job offers to stay close to family. The man is one day going to be a GM, I would bet any amount of money on it. Therefore, why not in Montreal? He’s an encyclopedia of hockey knowledge. That’s what the Canadiens need.
They don’t need a hot head. They don’t need an ex-star. They don’t need a former Habs GM, player or coach. They need a fresh start.
Would Pat Roy be good, with all that emotion, as a General Manager? Would Francois Giguere, after no discernible achievements, be the right fit? Is Julien Brisebois, obviously an accomplished young man, really the answer and not just more of the same?
Serge Savard is in as an advisor. A good move, as he’ll provide stability going forward. Larry Carriere is back as Assistant GM. He was never a coach. That wasn’t fair to him. Good move.
Now, it’s time to get it right. Stop hiring ex-players with no NHL experience. Stop hiring guys based on ethnicity.
Geoff Molson, get it right. Please, hire Pierre McGuire as the next GM of the Montreal Canadiens.
You’ll make me happy doing it, and I think you’ll make a lot of other Canadiens fans happy as well.
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About The Upper Canadien
The Upper Canadien is your one stop shop for all things Montreal Canadiens. Since the summer of 2010, I've been providing Habs related news, notes, and most importantly, opinions. As a blogger, I don't believe it's my job to report the news, it's my privilege to comment on it. You may disagree with what I suggest. In fact, you most likely will. But that's the great part about blogging: it spurs opinion, comment and engages all involved. I've really enjoyed all the debate and commentary from readers thus far and I encourage everyone to respond with ideas on lineups, trades, logos, sweaters, mascots, whatever. The Upper Canadien is a conversation for all hockey fanatics.
I've come to Kukla's Korner with four years of campus radio and three years of sportswriting from my time at Mount Allison University on Canada's East coast. Not only do I not have any professional journalistic training, after five years in the corporate world, I've spent much of the past two years completing an MBA. Business by day, hockey by night, I'm a Canadiens fan through and through. I hope you enjoy reading as much as I do writing.
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