Dean Eastman is the Montreal Canadiens' correspondent for OurHometown.ca Dean was born in Cornwall and raised in Long Sault and has been a loyal Habs fan since the days of the Pocket Rocket and the Roadrunner. He now calls Whitby, Ontario home to his wife Heather and young sons Eric and Ryan. Dean is passionate about his hockey, whether it be from the junior or professional ranks. Dean will provide current news and views on the Montreal Canadiens' organization from a global perspective. If you have questions or wish to contact Dean, you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
No big surprise here, Gauthier relieved of GM duties in Montreal
Really, it was no big surprise. To most Habs fans, probably the biggest surprise is the timing of today's news that General Manager Pierre Gauthier has been relieved of his managerial duties. Granted, the 2011-12 version of les Bleus-Blancs-Rouges is not a pleasant one. The team currently sits in 28th place.
Whitby - March 29, 2012 - Really, it was no big surprise. To most Habs fans, probably the biggest surprise is the timing of today's news that General Manager Pierre Gauthier has been relieved of his managerial duties. Granted, the 2011-12 version of les Bleus-Blancs-Rouges is not a pleasant one. The team currently sits in 28th place with a 29-34-14 record (72 points). The Canadiens are currently riding a two-game losing streak heading into Friday's matchup against the National Hockey League's leading team, the New York Rangers.
Montreal Canadiens' owner Geoff Molson stood in front of reporters earlier today holding the Canadiens' latest press conference to announce changes to the organization's personnel structure. In addition to the Gauthier news, nine-year advisor to Pierre Gauthier and retired Hab, Bob Gainey, is no longer with the team. In Gainey's place, Serge Savard will now become Molson's advisor as the organization looks to find the next general manager. Larry Carriere will return as assistant general manager and will be responsible for all hockey operations until a new GM is named.
Current interim head coach, Randy Cunneyworth will continue to coach the team and Molson will let the yet-to-be-named general manager make a decision on whether or not to retain Cunneyworth's services going into the 2012-13 NHL season.
When one watches the press conference (thank you to HabsTV.com for the footage), one cannot help but notice owner Geoff Molson's poise, eloquence and confidence standing in front of the media personnel. Molson also quashed any rumours that former Habitant, Patrick Roy will become the club's next head coach. Molson has not spoken to Roy since Roy's jersey was retired by the Montreal Canadiens in 2008.
Molson outlined the organization's priorities as follows:
1) Improve the team at every level,
2) Re-establish a winning culture for the long-term,
3) Give the fans what they rightly deserve - put the best possible product on ice,
4) and establish stability in all areas of the organization.
Today's news takes some sting out of the Canadiens' ugly 2011-12 season. I say some, but not all. Here's to looking forward to a brighter 2012-13 NHL season for the Montreal Canadiens.
Until next time, play every game as if it is your last one...
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