Happy 82nd birthday to Jean Béliveau

jb-law

A very happy Jean Béliveau in 2006, congratulated by granddaughters Mylène and Magalie, upon being conferred an honourary doctorate of law at McGill University.
© Bob Fisher

National Hockey League icon Jean Béliveau celebrates his 82nd birthday on Saturday with the best wishes of all of us at Hockey Inside/Out – and from far, far beyond. Many happy returns to the ageless, timeless legend of the Canadiens and the game of hockey, perhaps the sport’s greatest ambassador and certainly one of its finest gentlemen.

Here’s a feature I wrote back in June to mark the 60th wedding anniversary of Jean and Élise Béliveau, a peek into the remarkable lives of hockey’s Royal Couple.

You’re welcome, of course, to extend your best wishes to Mr. Béliveau in the Comments section below, and perhaps add your own personal history about your relationship from near or afar with the man who epitomizes class.

500 Comments

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  2. hab fan in leaf jungle says:

    Hey you morons and other scum who waste your lives fantasizing about a team of losers, this is an article to wish M.Beliveau a Happy Birthday. Show some respect for the greatest player ever to wear a Habs jersey. He has been my hero ever since I was a child. Go discuss the possible line combos of a bunch of losers who now play for the Habs when the article calls for it. Geez!!! Show some respect you idiots and get a life.. Happy Birthday M.Beliveau.

  3. Un Canadien errant says:

    So in May we looked at what the coming season might look like for the Montréal Canadiens farm team, the Hamilton Bulldogs (http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.ca/2013/05/the-2013-14-hamilton-bulldogs.html). Various issues were raised which needed to be addressed, as well as some holes on the roster that needed to be filled, and generally the progress has been encouraging in that regard, so it’s time to revisit the subject.

    We talked about the need for next season’s team to be still focused on developing young players, but that there should be a more concerted effort made to make it more competitive to at least challenge for a playoff spot, as two seasons of losing can shell-shock youngsters. They’re not in the AHL to learn how to lose. We need them to apprentice at how to compete and how to win.

    To achieve this, we felt that the team needed some talent upgrades in general, with AHL veterans to help support the youth and shoulder the load, as well as some tougher players so that our kids aren’t left exposed to intimidation tactics by older, rougher teams. We also wanted a coaching veteran to come to the aid of rookie coach Sylvain Lefebvre, who had never acted in a head coaching capacity before, only as an assistant.

    One assumption which wasn’t spelled out was that the team would improve organically, by virtue of all the kids having one more year of experience. The kids would be more skilled and confident and would win more. Simple, right? But it has been brought to our attention that the Bulldogs desperately needed offence, goal-scoring, if we ever wanted to win more. The goals wouldn’t just appear out of thin air from the same crew, we needed to add some playmakers and snipers.

    This was the roster as we understood it then, with some needed positions to be filled denoted generically:

    Forward:
    Holland-Leblanc-Kristo
    Bournival-Dumont-Quailer
    AHL Veteran-Naatinen-Blunden
    Hagel-AHL Veteran-Stortini

    Spare forward 1, spare forward 2

    Defence:
    Tinordi, Pateryn
    Beaulieu, Ellis
    Dietz, Nygren

    Spare AHL Veteran

    Goal:
    Tokarski,
    Mayer

    Since then, the Canadiens have added a lot of players who will reinforce the troops in Hamilton. First, chronologically at least, there was the drafting of Sven Andrighetto, an overage Junior player who can play in the AHL straightaway and kills two birds with one stone, with his offensive skills and the fact that he’s a natural left winger, of which we had none. He is now signed to an Entry Level Contract.

    Then, at the Prospect Development Camp in early July, the Canadiens invited a raft of free agents, and ended up signing three of them. Halifax Moosehead co-captain and Memorial Cup champion Stefan Fournier was signed to an ELC to culminate his dream season. He’s a big tough kid with decent hands who’ll bring grit and energy to the lineup, and try to play the role of an Yvon Lambert or Mike McPhee with the ‘Dogs.

    Ben Duffy and Stephen MacAulay were signed to AHL-ECHL contracts, and will each bring a set of skills that will be welcome. Mr. Duffy is last season’s scoring champion in the LHJMQ, while Mr. MacAulay is a former Blues draft pick who also finished his junior career winning a Memorial Cup with the Mooseheads, and projects to be more of a bottom-6 grinder in Hamilton.

    Around the same time, the Canadiens signed 28 year-old AHL veteran Martin St. Pierre as an Unrestricted Free Agent to an NHL-AHL deal. Mr. St. Pierre has played a few games in the NHL and a season in Europe, and has put up a lot of points in the AHL, often playing in the AHL All-Star Game. He’ll bring offence and experience to a lineup that can certainly use both.

    In a different vein, veteran pugilist Nick Tarnasky was also signed, as an upgrade on Zach Stortini and Kyle Hagel who were not retained. Mr. Tarnasky, another 28-year old AHL’er, is a more respected enforcer, and is able to play a more competent fourth-line role.

    Internally, the Canadiens re-signed Gabriel Dumont, and traded organization veteran Danny Kristo to the Rangers for Christian Thomas. While the trade itself is a bit of a stumper, in that we traded a slender offensively-gifted right winger for a more under-sized offensively-gifted right winger, in effect it doesn’t really affect the team makeup in Hamilton, we can expect Mr. Thomas to slot in where Danny Kristo was destined to be.

    Later in July, more depth was added. Stéphane Chaput, who started last season in Wheeling, worked his way up to Hamilton and was one of the more effective players there on an AHL contract, was re-signed for another year to add a little size and experience.

    Erik Nystrom, a Canadiens 6th-round pick last season, was given a 25-game tryout contract with the Bulldogs. He brings speed and some offensive skill and high effort reputedly, but will have to prove himself in the AHL if he wants to earn an NHL ELC.

    To round out the depth and add some veteran help and experience, the Bulldogs recently added 24-year old Justin Courtnall, a left winger with a bit of size at 6’03″ and 210 lbs, along with 24-year old blueliner Drew Schiestel, and 23-year old Joël Chouinard, another d-man.

    Finally, to add a splash of size on the blue line, Matt Grassi was signed to an AHL deal also, and while his point totals are not awe-inspiring, the brass must have felt he was worth giving another opportunity after the 6’3″ 220 pounder finished the previous season in Hamilton.

    So as we can see, lots of reinforcements to help the incumbent kids in Hamilton along, and a lot of the stated needs met. Veteranship, AHL experience? Check. Scoring, offensive ability? Check. Size, toughness? Check. Oh, did you bring some lefties? Roger, got some of those.

    So if we take another crack at the lineup, we see that we’ve filled the positions we needed to fill, and improved the team.

    AHL Veteran forwards: Martin St. Pierre, Nick Tarnasky, Stéphane Chaput, Justin Courtnall
    AHL Veteran defencemen: Drew Schiestel, Joël Chouinard
    Newcomers: Sven Andrighetto, Stefan Fournier, Ben Duffy, Stephen MacAulay, Erik Nystrom, Matt Grassi

    Forward:

    Bournival-Leblanc-Holland
    Andrighetto-St. Pierre-Thomas
    Courtnall-Naatinen-Blunden
    MacAulay-Tarnasky-Fournier

    Spare (ECHL): Nystrom-Duffy-Quailer
    Chaput

    Defence:
    Tinordi, Pateryn
    Beaulieu, Ellis
    Dietz, Nygren

    Spares (ECHL): Schiestel, Chouinard, Grassi

    Goal:
    Tokarski,
    Mayer

    As far as the coaching side, we didn’t get the crusty veteran coach I was expecting, instead hiring former Canadien forward Stéphan Lebeau as Assistant Coach to help out with the forwards. While we were surprised that he was the choice with his relatively meager coaching résumé (no pro experience, most recently coaching high school kids at Bishop’s College), he seems to have some fresh ideas and a positive, enthusiastic approach to his players. I would expect that the Canadiens brain trust will also be available to support Sylvain Lefebvre, there are enough different people there with various experience and abilities that he can draw on them when needed. Last season, Martin Lapointe and Patrice Brisebois spent a lot of time helping out at Bulldogs practice, so there seems to be a team approach with the management group, a willingness to cross-pollinate as opposed to remaining in separate silos.

    In closing, let’s offer a few notes on the roster presented above:

    1) Again, there is no attempt to present line combinations as preferable to any other. We’ve simply plopped down centres and matched them up with wingers with roughly the same styles and inclination.

    2) Well, maybe the fourth line of Nick Tarnasky centring Stephen MacAulay and Stefan Fournier is too much of a natural.

    3) You’ll notice that Gabriel Dumont is not listed among the forwards in the most recent ‘roster’, and that’s because we have a hunch that he’ll start the season in Montréal. Local kid, can play a lot of different roles, some snarl to his game, a coach’s favourite, we think he’ll win a spot to centre the fourth line.

    4) We still have a bit of an imbalance on the left and right wings. With Louis Leblanc and Patrick Holland both righties, I put Louis in at centre and Michaël Bournival on his natural left side at wing, although he projects maybe more as a centre than Louis does. Decisions, decisions…

    5) Steve Quailer had better pull up his socks and come in in great shape and ready to go, he’s got a fight on his hands to stay in the roster. He didn’t quite disappoint last season, exactly, being a rookie and all, but a big improvement will be needed this year.

    6) With the defencemen, the pairings are also based on left-right shooters for the Top 4, maybe Morgan Ellis who has a bit more offence to his game is a better partner for Jarred Tinordi, while Greg Pateryn’s defensive game complements Nathan Beaulieu better. Or maybe we’ll want to go powerplay pair, shutdown pair, I don’t know. As for the new guys Darren Dietz and Magnus Nygren, they are both righties, so there’s no way around that, they’ll have to figure it out.

    7) Of the other new defencemen, Joël Chouinard is a leftie, but the others are right-handed shooters. So what’s the deal with the Canadiens and rightie D’s? We’re hoarding them like Cee Lo with Twinkies. If lefties Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu are promoted, it won’t be pretty on the farm. Davis Drewiske, our of our superfluous lefties in the bigs, would probably have to go down to pitch in.

  4. Mattyleg says:

    I’m really looking forward to seeing Tinordi play.
    Any news on how he’s been training this summer?
    My worry is that he’ll get bigger (muscle-mass etc) and lose out on speed and manoeuverability. Big hulking defencemen are not much use if they can’t catch you…

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • piper says:

      More muscle should make him faster, no? Same goes for PK. Look at the muscle mass he has gained.
      I think Tinordi has lots of room for weight gain on his 6-6 frame.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      His weight of 205lbs for his 6’6″ frame is almost anorexic though. I think 235lbs would be about right for him.

      It will be interesting to see him at training camp for sure though. I would rather him in the lineup over Diaz, Drewiske or Bouillon, personally.

      • neumann103 says:

        Habs Rookie Camp Roster out last week listed Tinordi at 220 pounds.

        Apparently the weights listed were taken from the Summer Development Camp measurements in early July.

        230 by the start of 2014/2015 seems reasonable and is probably a good range to be in.

        “Et le but!”

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Hi Hobie/neumann103

        His weight shown on the official Habs site for the Rookie Camp next week is already 227 lbs and who knows when that was taken?

        24 TINORDI, Jarred * G/L 6’06’’ 227.

        http://canadiens.nhl.com/fr/v2/ext/Autre/RosterCampdesrecrues2013.pdf

        • neumann103 says:

          Ronn

          Cool. I think I was actually looking at the same source but just remembered it wrong. Went bck and sure enough Tinordi is listed at 227.

          Also sanity checked and he was measured at 218 in early July at the Development Camp.

          Always good to get updated info. Too often some old stat from Junior or the draft gets repeated forever, exacerbating the gnashing and wailing about being too small.

          “Et le but!”

          • Maritime Ronn says:

            Hey Neumann

            Seriously.
            I am 100% sure that what you mentioned – that Tinordi was 220, was exactly what was posted on the official Habs web site less than 10 days ago.
            There was an update and as mentioned, what will be his September camp weigh in?

            Weight is one thing – strength. toughness, and meanness are all other things
            Let’s hope.. :-)

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I’m with you Matty. To tell you the truth I was a little disappointed in the Murray signing. I really had hoped and thought that Tinordi would be given the opportunity to step into a role with the big club this year. While nothing is out of the question at this point it seems as though the organization would prefer more seasoning in Hamilton. They’re smarter than I so I yield and I’ve since warmed up to Murray.

      • Sportfan says:

        Remember Jim injuries always happen, Murray is a depth move as well if he or gorges were to go down, I’m sure Tinordi would be the first d-man called up!

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      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Hi Jim

        Can we agree to let things play themselves out?
        From here, I believe Murray will be Gill + with grit and a mean streak.

        Tinordi will get his chance sooner than later – be it out of camp with great play, or as 1st call up.
        GMMB will not let an NHL ready player not stay ( Galchenyuk-Gallagher)

        D is a whole other issue.
        The Habs need pro experienced NHL depth on D, and the Murray signing was good considering that same depth and the Habs need for an upgrade for both PK/Toughness.

        Asset Cost?
        Nothing vs. the Pens 2/2nd round draft choices only 4 months ago.

        Jim, Allow the ‘NHL Nature’ to take its normal course..
        OK?

        • Ron says:

          Ronn, Jim is agreeing that he has warmed up to Murray. Why the emphasis on the OK ?

          • neumann103 says:

            Okay, I’ll be the guy who has not warmed up to murray.

            Difference between Murray and Gill to me is tjat I thought he was useless with the Leafs but proved me wrong later with the Penguins. I tDifferent Murray was fine a few years back but not anymore.

            Different trajectories

            “Et le but!”

        • Habfan10912 says:

          I agree with what both you and Nick are saying. I’ve warmed up to Murray and look forward to seeing what he adds to the team. I’m sure I’ll see Tinordi play this season. At the very least to one of my trips to catch a Dog game.

  5. Harditya says:

    Corey Crawford signed to a six year, 36 M dollars contract extension.

  6. Maritime Ronn says:

    A question for HIO:

    How do you suggest that the Habs set up their D pairings for the start of the year… barring any further injury?

    Three different aspects to consider in the overall time mix:
    1) Even Strength. 2) PP. 3) PK.

    Looking at previous years’ stats, the Habs will have an ‘average’ of 4-5 Minor penalties per game, and will also have the man advantage for the same 4-5 situations.
    That means that for about 1/3 of the game, or about 20 minutes, PK and PP specialty teams will be on the ice.

    At this specific moment, Markov, Gorges, and Subban are 3 of the Top 4 Locks for the majority of ‘Even Strength’ situations.

    It was noted this week by Coach Therrien, that Emelin is on schedule to be back the end of November – meaning he will miss almost 2 full months, or about 27 games representing 33% of the schedule.
    Then, he quite possibly will need 5-10 more games to find his ‘game shape’ and will most probably be eased into the lineup starting with lessor minutes to begin with.

    To fill the important #4 spot along with the-5-6 D spots until then, we are left with the following in no specific order:
    Tinordi, Murray, Diaz, Bouillon, Drewiske.

    The question becomes, who takes that #4 spot in ‘Even Strength’ situations to start the year, or does it get done by committee?

    From here, and contrary to several others, it would be great to give Tinordi a real shot – that is, IF he showed well in the exhibition games.
    He played 80 pro games last year – 67 Hamilton/13 Habs including 5 playoff games.
    During the playoffs, he was trusted (tested?) with 3rd pairing minutes and 2nd Unit PK.
    What more AHL “Seasoning” does he need?
    Rest assured his weigh-in will be between 225-230.

    That being said, the CBA/Salary Cap/1-way contracts may dictate that Tinordi begins in Hamilton, then be the 1st call-up.

    If not, this would be good to see.
    From here, I would also like to see Gorges moved to the right side where he had some very good success playing with Markov in the past.

    Even Strength:
    Top 4 Markov-Gorges / Tinordi-Subban
    Then-Murray-Diaz
    With that crew, the Habs have grit, size, and push back and perhaps more important, Carey will obviously be better protected in the Blue Paint

    Specialty Teams:

    PP:
    Markov-Subban
    (Markov-Subban)-Diaz

    PK:
    Murray-(Gorges-Subban)
    (Markov/Tinordi)-Subban

    Perhaps the ‘wild card’ in all of this is, and while many have written him off, is …Davis Drewiske.
    This 28 year old, 6’2″-220 pound Dman was tossed into a less than ideal situation coming from a very different Coach Suter Kings D system with little to no practice time to adjust to the ‘Therrien swarm’.
    Here’s a guy that was playing 3rd pair minutes on a very deep LA Kings D.

    Who would have thunk last year at this time, the Habs would have Pro depth Dman issues?
    BRAVO GMMB!

    Thoughts?

    • neumann103 says:

      Thoughts?

      1. Ditch the swarm.

      That way players like Drewiske don’t have to learn and adapt to it and players who are not suited to it don’t have to play it.

      PK that was #2 in the disasterous 2011 2012 season can make a reappearance after last season’s swarm enabled 23rd place showing

      Problem solved!
      “Et le but!”

    • D Mex says:

      Not sure I would use ‘ grit, size and pushback ‘ to describe a Markov-Gorges ES pairing, at least, no more so than in the past. Work ethic aside, Gorges is not overly effective IMHO, and Markov’s skill set is in decline.

      The PP pairings described look OK, altho it’ll be interesting to see if someone from Hamilton present(s) other option(s) – either that or MB pulls off a trade for that same purpose. 2¢ worth …

      ALWAYS Habs -
      D Mex

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Hi Mex

        Can we agree to give both Markov and Gorges a sort of 1/2 mulligan for last season?
        In the overall thing, they weren’t THAT bad as the Habs finished NOT in the bottom 10 as most ‘experts’ predicted…Remember?

        Both Markov and Gorges are Strong – yet strength is also a function of not being hurt.

        We all know about Markov and his knees issues…and his age.
        As for Gorges, he was left vulnerable and unprotected last year and maybe the best example is here.
        He was pounded all year.
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ak783bx543c

        From here, a belief that he will be back stronger and better nexy year

        • D Mex says:

          Ronn : I am a Markov fan and appreciate most of what Gorges has brought to the team the past few seasons.
          This being said, Markov cannot cheat the calendar much longer, and casting Gorges in a role to attempt to counter opposing top-6 trios left him somewhat exposed in my view.
          As a throw-in, I will add that comments from both of these guys during the PK saga disappointed me last season – my take is that both could have taken a different approach as team ‘ leaders ‘ …
          As well, the stunt by Gorges in firing the puck at an Ottawa player during the playoffs, out of frustration or otherwise, was low class and left a bad taste here.

          Your observation that Drewiske may bring benefits in terms of D-corps depth has merit in my view – should have mentioned that earlier.

          ALWAYS Habs -
          D Mex

  7. Eddie says:

    hey Chris, re: Avtsin.

    I got to know the family and I can tell you that Alex is married and has a new born. His wife’s family lives here so he had a good support network- it’s not as though he was lost in Canada or was alone and unable to adapt. He spent the summers here and he looked very happy.

    Avtsin was playing in the KHL at 18 years of age and then came over – directly to Hamilton.

    Why he struggled in Hamilton, I could not tell you for sure. But I can tell you that he and his family believed he was a darn good player and that the Habs never really “gave him a fair chance”.

    Some players feel ‘entitled” – and they forget that need to “earn” their next promotion. Possibly – speculation on my part – this was Avtsin’s problem.

  8. frontenac1 says:

    Jeff Beck. The album “Truth”. Bought it when I was 14. A Classic. Saludos!

  9. B says:

    Who will get more points this coming season, Briere, Ryder or Cole?

    –Go Habs Go!–

    • derfab says:

      Good question.

      Briere.

      Who will actually throw a check?

      Cole.

    • Dust says:

      Probably Cole. I figure hell play on a line with benn and seguin.

    • Sportfan says:

      Points Cole, goals I see Ryder doing that, the Devils are desperate.

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
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    • Maritime Ronn says:

      B

      Perhaps a lot of ways to look at that.

      Who really cares about individual goals/points if the team is awful and it doesn’t make the playoffs?

      Let’s look back at the Habs 2011/12 season.
      The Habs finished 28th overall.
      Did it make any difference who had the most points?

      Max Pacioretty: G33. Pts:65
      Erik Cole: G35. Pts:61
      David Desharnais: G16. Pts:60

      Who knows how serious that Habs were taken in the last half of the year?

      I didn’t do any goalie analysis, yet did they face the top 1st string goalies, or the back -ups?
      Were the goals and points scored significant, or were they accumulated when a game was out of hand and didn’t matter?

      Both Ryder and Cole may accumulate more points next year, yet if Cookie Monster Briere can score key/winning goals and get the Habs into the playoffs while those 2 others have an early summer, that would be mission accomplished.

  10. mrhabby says:

    Jb and the hottie granddaughters are great but time for another thread.

  11. B says:

    I was reading some Erie Otters discussion on HFBoards. Crisp had two hat tricks in inter squad scrimmage games last week. In the first game he played on the wing with McDavid and in the other he played on the wing with Petit (another young Otter’s center).

    http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=1465905&page=12

    Crisp is listed as a center. I don’t know if he played at center last season or was used as a winger. I am curious if he could be a center if he ever makes the NHL or if he is better off on the wing going forward? I also wonder if Crisp will score more goals than McCarron this season? Here’s hoping they both fill the net.

    –Go Habs Go!–


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