Big Bird speaks on his emotional night

Larry Robinson, with his wife, Jeannette (left), and daughter Rachelle, son Jeffrey and grandson Dylan watch his banner being raised tonight at the Bell Centre.
Shaun Best, Reuters

There’s no team that recognizes its history quite the way the Canadiens do. It probably doesn’t hurt that the 98-year-old Canadiens have more history than any other NHL team.

Tonight, one of the game’s all-time great defencemen, Canadiens Hall of Famer and six-time Stanley Cup champion Larry Robinson, saw his No. 19 hoisted to the rafters of the Bell Centre in an emotional pre-game ceremony.

Robinson’s family and many of his friends were on the carpeted ice with him, or in the arena stands, and both the Canadiens and Ottawa Senators were on their benches to watch the event. Robinson made a point of thanking the Senators for their presence, when they could have camped out in the dressing room, and shook each player’s hand after having done likewise with the Canadiens, lined up along their blue line.

A photo gallery is here.

And you’ll find a Gazette audio slideshow on Robinson here.

Big Bird met with the media for 20 minutes after tonight’s first period. Here is Larry’s full, bilingual chat with journalists, during which he describes the plentiful emotions of an evening that won’t be forgotten by Robinson, or anyone who witnessed it in person or on television.

Find a little time to read this excellent piece by Chris Stevenson of the Ottawa Sun.


  1. Chuck says:

    I had the opportunity to take this in live Monday night. Not too many dry eyes in the house (including mine!)

    Classy ceremony, classy organization, with the crowd intent on letting Larry know exactly how much he meant to them and what he brought to the team.

    And some people wonder why I’m a Habs fan… you think that Gainey’s won’t me more than a little emotional?

    “Vote Saku for All-Star… or little Timmy gets it!!!”

  2. Scotty90 says:

    Great ceremony, great crowd, great man. Lamoriello only made one lilttle mistake when he mentionned ‘who can forget Larry’s hit on Schultz’!

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