Canadiens sign Louis Leblanc

Goodbye to Harvard after one season with the Crimson.

Goodbye Cambridge, Mass. … hello, Montreal Juniors, who traded for his Q rights, sending forward Guillaume Asselin and their 2011 first-round choice in the QMJHL draft to Chicoutimi.

Goodbye, Ivy League economics degree. Hello, $$$ in The Show (if the kid pans out) – and maybe courses at McGill.

The Canadiens’ first-round draft choice in 2009 has signed a three-year contract.

Leblanc will attend the Team Canada juniors’ training camp in Newfoundland from Aug. 4 to 7. The Montreal Juniors’ camp begins Aug. 15.

 

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• The Louis Leblanc playlist (heavy on Lady Gaga)

What Leblanc said at Development Camp

Hockey’s Future scouting report on Leblanc

• An interview Leblanc did while he was at Harvard

• An assessment of Leblanc before his freshman year

• A pre-draft assessment

134 Comments

  1. crabvader says:

    Say what you want about him, this is still one of the nicest saves ever made:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qoe4odWVN8M&feature=related

    And here’s a video of the top 15 goals of 09-10 season made by corunguneee (best video guy out there on youtube for habs related stuff):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nmI6BYvQTQ

     

    And yes I’m happy that Leblanc is signed. No more of this 31 game season crap. Hopefully he develops some toughness… The Q won’t help him much in that dept.

  2. habsfansince91 says:

    it’s right outside the bell center

  3. Top Corner says:

    mmm K , i have a question Montreal-ers…..iam on a road trip and iam driving through Montreal Sunday…ish , i want to visit the Bell fer sure , but what iam confused about is where the Centennial Plaza is located, is it @ Brossard?? Outside the Bell , or elswhere?? Thx in advance…..

  4. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Surprised, I’m not. I like this move (moves all over the place, I will get to that).  He is 19, french, a center, drafted 1st round by the Montréal Canadiens…is there anything else to say? You take that shot at 19…The ‘Club’ knows what they’re doing, and he likes it, he ain’t no simpleton.

    My key points in looking forward to this season (Andrew and SD can vouch for this, I REALLY think this team will be better in 10/11 including Price).

    – new owners, that are hockey fans and know the sport, with a history.
    – new GM (new Pres. coming soon), Gainey remaining, we saw the team improved to a point, but it became stale and a locker room blow up was in order (you can’t always predict chemistry). The ‘core’ team is MUCH better now. I don’t have to name the names of the players that we all love watching play the best damn sport do I?
    – the whole scouting change,coaching in Hamilton, new staff all over the place.
    – not afraid to make moves or gamble on players
    – getting young talent, at a cost mind you (cough-Halak-cough)…kidding, but seriously that allowed Pleks to sign a fair contract and remain a Hab =) IMHO Pleks has more upside to this team than Halak.

    I just have a good feeling this year, I hope the roster is pretty much what it is now, this fall. Can you really complain about that?

    Now, bare with me.

    Halak was traded and that is fine (I have always said no one player is bigger than the Habs, that is why I still cheer for them after all these years, my fav Hab is Roy (and Mats)), like I mentioned above it allowed Pleks to remain a Hab. I just don’t like how some fans here treat what he did and just always run silly stats to make Carey look better. Montréal has not had a goaltending problem (as far as good netminding IMO) for a while but just enough of the crap talk. Lets move on. EVERYONE. GO watch Halak this past playoffs again, I don’t care what anyone says, that was BRILLIANT goaltending and to be a fan of his and see him do that…good day eh

    I like Price, I want him to succeed. Who did not feel bad for this kid last year. The previous year, I really felt bad for him, but admired what Gainey did, he stuck with him. I thought it would build his character faster, he has the tools yes, he is big, and I felt he played quicker on some nights with his lateral movement, but played with a bad stick, learning I guess. I guess at times I felt with everything most pundants were saying, I expected more. My bad? Could be.

    Maybe it did in a way make him mentally stronger, but came out negatively this year. Which was not helped by the media, who ran with it. After careful thought, I think it was great for his career to get that ‘Roy Moment’ out of the way. A+ for that night…I love watching a player give all the ignoramus a pair of tall cans ,!,,  ,,!,

    If St.Patty likes ’em, he has my entire support. He wears the CH, playing my favorite position in hockey. He has to be good.

    I just really hope he knows he can be…

     GO HABS GO !

  5. BKAK72 says:

    Tribute video?  Oh boy.  I saw a kid skating around aimlessly…oh boy.

    — I will not apologize for being a delirious HABS fan! —

  6. The Capitalist Pig says:

    What a bitch Brad! Did it screw with your farming?

  7. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Maybe they should have posted a video of him in a Microeconomics class?

  8. andrewberkshire says:

    He never had a free ride to Harvard, his acceptance still applies indefinitely. All he would have to do is paperwork for readmission.

  9. Hammer says:

    Not a free ride to Harvard!

  10. sidhu says:

    You know that Leblanc video wasn’t all that impressive — for a tribute video, it just showed him skating around and not scoring or setting up any goals.

     

  11. Mattyleg says:

    Now I recognize you, Gazoo!

    Nice to see you on here, bud.

    A retired elementary school teacher’s father got a tryout with the Habs in 1937, you know.

    And because Harvard was waaaaaaaaaaaay out of the question for him, he went off to war and got shot at for a bit.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  12. andrewberkshire says:

    Dryden did it, heck I’ve taken a year off and gone back, it’s not so hard if you have a plan.

  13. andrewberkshire says:

    He can go back to school whenever he wants.

  14. andrewberkshire says:

    Well veterinary school is harder to get into everywhere, partly because there are fewer schools offering the program, and partly because it’s a way broader scope than human medicine, you have to know many different anatomies and such. Dentistry is also harder to get into than medicine, and I know dentists who make over a mil per year, way more than doctors. With better options for the smartest people as far as pay goes, it’s no wonder we have to constantly poach second rate doctors from countries like South Africa.

  15. Hammer says:

    Should have stayed in school !!! He just blew a quarter million dollar education to ride the bus in the Q, and then the iron lung in Hamilton. His chances of making the Habs ibn the next three years are slim, why not get an education and have something to fall back on in case he doesn’t make it. See Bilideau, Ryan … etc for examples of first round picks who went MIA very quickly.

  16. rogus says:

    And here in Saskatchewan they are harder to get into as well!!!

  17. rogus says:

    I almost died when he got passed over…glad I didn’t!

  18. rogus says:

    How did your junior career go??? The day I lost the cage, the game changed tenfold!!!

  19. JIMVINNY says:

    Ever heard of Ryan Leif?  He had pretty good college stats too.

  20. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Hey, the great thing about a Louis Leblanc story is that it gives Carey a few hours of rest! That kid is one hell of a teammate!!!

  21. andrewberkshire says:

    And compared to the MLB, the NFL pays peanuts. And to think that a surgeon in Canada makes less than a veterinarian.

  22. rogus says:

    He means to be strengthened – more than those other guys. Like, you know, more stronger???

  23. Matthew says:

    Good point, but i am not sure if a retired elementary school teacher would agree…

  24. TomNickle says:

    Not Bradford’s fault really.

    And it could actually pay off for the Rams considering that Bradford had better statistics in college than Peyton Manning.

     

  25. TripleX says:

    Beyond insane Andrew.  If a rookie QB is getting 13 million a year and 50 million is guaranteed without throwing one ball in the NFL, what is a Super Bowl winning QB going to get?  Unreal!

     

    ‘Cogito ergo doleo’

  26. rogus says:

    Pretty sure that was the best non contact hockey video I’ve ever seen. Hopefully he leaves the Tanguay perimeter play back in Harvard. And we thought Gui 84 was soft…

  27. JIMVINNY says:

    Good Heavens.  What does this make Brady and Manning worth?

  28. andrewberkshire says:

    Sports are insane…

  29. The Capitalist Pig says:

    I’ve seen a few Friday night games there with my older brother when we head up to your neck of the woods for a Saturday night game at the Bell. It’s a nice place to see a game and you can always get good seats, but it’s a far cry from NCAA D-1 for obvious reasons: the ages and skills of the players and the quality of the coaching. On those dimensions, watching Army might provide better value for a dollar depending on who they are playing.

  30. TripleX says:

     

    Think NHL GM’s are a little irresponsible?

    QB Sam Bradford the first round pick of the St. Louis Rams just signed a six year 78 MILLION DOLLAR deal with 50 MILLION GUARANTEED!!

     

    ‘Cogito ergo doleo’

  31. punkster says:

    Just realized that’s a 10 minute drive from my place. Saw one game there last year, well I attended an open bar event where a hockey game reportedly took place. I just may amble over there a few times to check up on this kid.

    FREE TIMO!

  32. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Perhaps in Quebec?

  33. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Considering that it was best for the organization for him to stay at Harvard, that is precisely where he should be playing next season. Right now, he is destined to be a story on page 16 that the team really didn’t need.

  34. punkster says:

    Haha. Look around. It’s pretty common.

    FREE TIMO!

  35. punkster says:

    Pretty well say the same thing about his development there to CP below. The Q won’t give him anything but the ability (I hope) to watch out for headhunters.

    FREE TIMO!

  36. punkster says:

    It is certainly better for the organization if he stayed in school at least another year then moved to the AHL. I don’t trust the Q to bring anything to his game. Hell, Joel Bouchard is an assistant coach. What does that say? But the die is cast and who knows. The kid may just be as good as everyone hopes. I doubt it but we’ll see.

    FREE TIMO!

  37. JIMVINNY says:

    Definitely strengthened, you mean?  I don’t know what stregthening is, but I don’t think any team in the east did that.

  38. Mark C says:

    If any one care about his contract, without double checking he will be a slider. Meaning that he will not become a UFA early unless he plays in 10 NHL games this season.

  39. Duracell3 says:

    He traded in playing against 18-24 year olds to play against 16-20 year olds. This brings him no closer to anything really.

  40. Mattyleg says:

    Fantastic.

    Lots of people are probably looking at him, saying “How could he pass up a chance to go to Harvard?”

    The way I see it, hockey players want to play hockey, and any classes they would be taking at ANY university would be to simply keep them playing hockey… with some RARE exceptions (i.e. Dryden)

    If I had a chance to play junior hockey and one day be a Montreal Canadien, I would ditch Oxford, Cambridge, Hevard, Yale, even UQAM.

    Don’t second-guess a kid going for his dream.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  41. Duracell3 says:

    I would argue that he is not any closer to the NHL in the QMJHL than he was playing US Division 1. He probably thinks he is, but I highly doubt he really is or will develop to be any better than he would have been staying in college. The only thing he really gains from this is being able to focus 100% on hockey and not college life.

  42. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Ah, to play in the Denis Savard arena, what a dream. Yankee Stadium seems so pedestrian next to it!

  43. Rudy says:

    A wife and a family at age 21/22?? Now that would be more stupid than leaving Harvard for the Q

  44. The Capitalist Pig says:

    You seem to have a big woody where cages are concerned. Did you feel the same way when Plante donned the mask?

  45. The Capitalist Pig says:

    And, he can spend the rest of his life running them!

      “Mr. Esposito, we have a milk spill in isle three!”

  46. gmd says:

    That video accounts for 3 minutes of my life that I’ll never get back.  Sat all the way through it just to see him not score on the shoot out/penalty shot.

  47. The Capitalist Pig says:

    The Canadiens should have instructed him to stay at Harvard for another year because that is what is in the best interest of the organization. Except for the WJC, assuming that he even makes the team, what will he gain by playing in the Q? Expecting him to make a jump to the AHL with significant results is a bit of a stretch in my opinion. Harvard isn’t Denver and I just don’t see him being a realistic replacement for Trotter.

  48. punkster says:

    Oh, and as an aside, the folks who think he can easily transition back to Harvard may be right in theory. In practice though going back to school is one big, tough, long road when you’e no longer 19, you have a wife and a small family, a mortgage, bills and the roof needs to be reshingled. Chances of him making it to an NHL payday are still iffy so he better keep his spending in check and limit his credit cards until he hits the big contract.

    FREE TIMO!

  49. Peter Young says:

    I’m a graduate of Harvard Law School, and I would have chosen a good chance to play with the Canadiens over that without hesitation.  I’m pleased Louis has signed with the Canadiens and committed his future to our club, although I do think he might have gained from another year of Harvard hockey.  He can attend McGill, a fine university in its own right, while playing junior hockey in Montreal and if his pro hockey career does not pan out, I’ll bet he would be allowed to return to Harvard as a student.

    The Harvard Crimson ran a story trumpeting that Harvard’s Louis Leblanc had been selected to triy out for the Canadian national junior team.  I had the pleasure of writing a comment noting that he had signed with my club, the Canadiens, and would not be returning to play for Harvard, citing the link to this blog.

  50. observer says:

    It was his lifelong goal to one day play for the Montreal Juniors. Whose attendence this year will break team records.

  51. PeterStone says:

    no suprise.  As soon as he got representation, the next move was obvious.

    I think its a great move for him.  If you want to be a Lawyer or Doctor, go to Harvard.  If you want to try to becomes a professional hockey player, play in the CHL. 

    He can always go back to Harvard.

  52. observer says:

    Not top 10? You’re right they are not, certainly since they were 19th best last season and do not appear to have improved much, if at all. While other teams in the East have definately stregthened.

  53. nightmare_49 says:

     Cap Pig – Angelo’s father owns a chain of grocery stores, enough said.

  54. punkster says:

    Na, nothing to do with the WJC and you know it. But seriously, think back to that thing you didn’t do when you were 19 that you always wished you could have tried (and I don’t mean that blonde in the cafeteria who always giggled when you said hello to her). You remember 19? All hormones and macho and fun. From my 58 year old position in life I agree, stay in school. But man, the opportunity to play the game with the best. The ultimate test. It’s all wrong, sure, but it’s also so right.

    FREE TIMO!

  55. ESundy36 says:

    As someone who attends many Yale hockey games and will be enrolling at Northeastern University for graduate courses I am happy that I will no longer have to secretly cheer for any Cantabs.

  56. observer says:

    He’ll make more money if it turns out alright in 10-12 years doing/playing something he loves than he could ever make in a lifetime after graduating and then working, both which he still can do.

  57. nightmare_49 says:

      The carrot on this stick for Montreal juniors was that he could take courses at McGill while playing at the’Q’, and, of course, no cages, lol.

  58. Rudy says:

    So he could go back to Harvard and pick right up where he left off (sophmore year)? This is making more sense then long term.

  59. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Angelo Esposito should have followed that plan.

  60. The Capitalist Pig says:

    Dave, I believe that Steve is right on this one, unless Leblanc’s family really needs the coin. There was no reason whatsoever to rush this guy. Going from the ECAC to the Q? Come on? Oh, I get it. He’s going to play for Canada in next year’s WJC and redeem the gold medal. BFD!

  61. punkster says:

    I knew Reg hadn’t passed away, just drove that bus on a different route for a change 😉

    FREE TIMO!

  62. Bill says:

    I was thinking the same thing, but I’ve reconsidered: if he’s smart, he can make this work. Put in four years. If he played junior this year, AHL the next, then played in Montreal for two years, he’d know if he’s going to have a future in the pros. By then. he’ll likely have made over a million bucks, which most of us have to spend at least 10 years to do. At that time, if hockey is working out, he’s looking at making serious dollars playing a kid’s game; if it’s not happening, he goes back to Harvard in his early twenties, finishes the Economics degree, takes an MBA, and writes his own ticket. He really can’t lose.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  63. punkster says:

    On the other hand (ya, ya, you have 4 fingers and a thumb) at his age and faced with the same opportunities and (this is the important factor) WITHOUT THE YEARS OF EXPERTISE AND EXPERIENCE WE HAVE…wouldn’t you make the same decision? And kick yourself for years after if you passed that opportunity by?

    Hey, my mind says “Go to Harvard kid, don’t be a damn fool” but my heart says “Put on the sweater, live the dream, take the chance!”

     

    FREE TIMO!

  64. punkster says:

    Like I alluded to Steve below, from our lofty heights of age and experience we may disagree with his call. It is, though, his call and at his age faced with the same choices I would bet all three of us would likely make the same decision. Or kick ourselves for 40 years after for not grasping the chance when it came along.

    FREE TIMO!

  65. 24 Cups says:

    Dave – How many people ever get to go to Harvard?  How would you feel knowing that your son was the one in a million who made it?  And how would you feel knowing that he pissed it away to play in the Q or the AHL?

    On The Buses.  Reg Varney is the new coach of Hamilton.

  66. The Capitalist Pig says:

    I’m squarely in your camp on this one and would be really pissed if I was one of his parents. Can you say “Angelo Esposito?”

  67. The Capitalist Pig says:

    I think he would have been better off playing another year at Harvard. Even though the ECAC is not one of the premier NCAA D-1 conferences, the level of competition is a heck of a lot higher than it is in the Q. Moreover, he could have delayed coming to the circus on ice for another season.

  68. punkster says:

    Steve, there was a hue and cry when the news broke a few weeks ago that he was staying in school from those who believed he was wasting his opportunity. At the time I argued that it was his decision and to just go with it. I say the same again; his call, whether we believe it’s right or wrong. Put yourself in his 19 year old shoes. A chance to play with the big boys and see what you’re made of? Tough call at any age. We can look back with our years and believe that our sage counsel may suugest he do differently. But would we in his place? I think I’d try for the brass ring.

    FREE TIMO!

  69. punkster says:

    Interesting. I was happy for him when it looked like he was going to stay in school and I’m just as pleased for him now that he has decided to give pro hockey a try. Too early to tell how it will all pan out but it’s great to have another bright, talented, young prospect move up in the system.

    FREE TIMO!

  70. habs001 says:

    the habs i believe to be a real cup contender 2012-2013…despite the playoff run this team right now is not even a top 10 team…many posters have forgotten how many bad games this team played in the regular season. even in the 19 playoff games we were the better team maybe 5 times. last year the habs were really a 500 team that was able to pick up extra points in o/t wins,,,this team needs at least 5-7 players that are a major upgrade and that will happen in the next 2 years ..some from within and some in trades and free agency

  71. 24 Cups says:

    Leblanc makes the mistake of a lifetime. How short-sighted could he be? Was there no one in his inner circle or family who could have counselled him out of this decision?

  72. Seppo says:

    This is a very good news, and just made my weekend brighter !!!! What a surprise….late friday night. Will make this coming season a little bit more exciting.

    ————————

    mok@habsolumentepic.com

  73. nightmare_49 says:

       James Wisniewski trade to the Islanders for a third round pick has me shaking my head. The Ducks are not in the position to lose a ‘D’ even at that salary, thats business i quess.

       IMO Wisniewski is at best a 4th D man, on a normal team, who is agressive but has a tendency to run around in his end, sort of like Komo, and has other cramps that show occasionally but if played with a solid partener could be of value as a 2nd unit.

      On the island he’ll be forced to play on the top unit, presumably, which will easily show his warts and really stand out but he’s a UFA next year (asset) so this may only be a short stop in his career. Next stop Hogtown , lol.

     read more on Ducks blog …  http://ducks.ocregister.com/

     

    via Anaheim Ducks tweet,

    (GM) Murray on Wiz trade: “It was a tough situation… But I have other plans, that’s the thing.”

     

       via Anaheim Ducks tweet,

    (GM) Murray on Wiz trade: “It was a tough situation… But I have other plans, that’s the thing.” ( Hammer? ? ) 

  74. scrowe21 says:

    Wow, this is suprising..Hope he has a great year in Hamilton.

     

    ——–If you play nhl10 for xbox360 add me – scrowe21


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