Happy 83rd birthday to Habs legend Jean Béliveau

Happy birthday to Canadiens living legend Jean Béliveau, who turned 83 on Sunday.

Back in 2005, as Red Fisher prepared for his 50th season covering the Canadiens, he wrote a feature series for The Gazette ranking the 10 best players he had watched in bleu-blanc rouge with Béliveau coming in at No. 1.

Below is the feature Fisher wrote on Béliveau:

(Gazette file photo/Pierre Obendrauf)

In a class by himself



As long as anyone can remember, even before he was to become everything that was good about this Montreal Canadiens franchise, Jean Béliveau has been special.

Was there ever a player blessed with more grace on and off the ice? He was a quiet leader who led by example. He walked and skated tall – and always will be remembered that way. We rejoiced in his accomplishments and were left limp with grief when he was struck with adversity – on and off the ice.

Some years ago, all of us were saddened when he announced in a brief statement that in a matter of days, he would start radiation treatment for a malignant tumour doctors had discovered in his neck. This man, loved and admired by so many, who won so many battles on the ice in his 18-season career with the Canadiens, took on his biggest one with greater resolve and courage than any game he ever played.

“I rely totally on the expertise of my doctors,” he was quoted in the statement. “I intend to follow their instructions and recommendations to the letter. I feel good and I fully intend on winning this next battle.

“During my treatments, for the next few months, I very humbly ask everyone to respect the privacy of my family and myself.”

He won it, against great odds. He handled the radiation, although for a long while he lost his sense of taste. He carried a bottle of spring water with him all day to ease the terrible discomfort of dry mouth, a condition that exists to this day. However, through all this, he was still the smiling giant of a man, available to people of all ages and languages and colours. His ability to charm others never has left him because he is, after all, Jean Béliveau.

Numbers and individual achievements don’t begin to describe what Béliveau has meant to his family, to the Canadiens organization, to people everywhere. Eighteen seasons with the Canadiens, his last 10 as captain; 10 Stanley Cups; two Hart Trophies, one Conn Smythe; 507 goals and 712 assists in 1,125 games; 176 points in 162 playoff games … only numbers. They pale in comparison alongside the love and respect other players, old and new, and the people have for him.

It wasn’t that long ago I ran into him at the Montreal General Hospital. An employee who was mopping the corridor on the sixth floor came along, stopped, his eyes widening. He said: “Ah, Monsieur Béliveau … bonjour!”

What he got in return for the next couple of minutes were smiles and words of cheer. It was always “Monsieur Béliveau,” even though he would have preferred “Jean.” That’s respect. That’s love.

“When you talk about the great players, the superstars who’ve played for the Canadiens,” Dickie Moore once told me, “he’s right up there with the very best. As an individual, he’s always been in a class by himself. As an individual, on and off the ice, nobody comes close.”

Béliveau was more than a captain: he was a father figure in many ways. If a player had a problem on the ice, Béliveau was only a stick-length away. If there were personal problems that needed attention, he was available. He didn’t inflict himself on anyone, but everyone knew he was there.

There always has been a shine to him that had a magical quality to it. Everything that is Béliveau comes from within. He cared about people, all people, when he played – and still does. Opponents played hard against him, but the respect was always there – and still is.

Wayne Gretzky has had critics among his peers. So did Mario Lemieux. Some players didn’t like Henri Richard, Phil Esposito and Bobby Clarke – but I don’t recall any player lashing out at Béliveau. Until he spanked today’s players for their stance in the lockout in early November, I can’t recall Béliveau ever going public with bad words about other players. He was almost too good to be true. Too many among the old-time players recoil at the money being made today, but Béliveau always has gone the other way. He’s glad for them.

He’d like to see the hooking and slashing and holding taken out of the game, but that’s where it ends. He is gracious about today’s stars, and when he played had a special place in his heart for Gordie Howe.

I remember asking Jean about Howe when the latter was retiring – for the first time – after 25 years with the Red Wings. Would there ever be another like him?

“If there is, I’ll be very surprised,” Béliveau said. “For another Gordie Howe, it will take a long time.”

Béliveau was awed by Howe’s strength, as well as his natural ability.

“Physical strength is a very important part of the game and always has been,” Béliveau said. “I would have to say that there are probably a lot of hockey players who are very strong physically, but they don’t have the ability to go with it. They don’t have the polish. Howe always had everything. He could do everything right and do it so beautifully.

“Some of the people, they say that Howe did not skate too fast. He knew what he was doing all the time, so he did not have to skate too fast, they said. All I can say is that up until near the end of his NHL career, the players who had to cover him should be asked how fast Howe could skate. And if you caught him, that great strength of his was too much.

“There are people like Howe in every business,” Béliveau added. “There are some who will do their job and do it well. That’s all. It was not enough for Howe.

“Twenty-five years … I do not know how anybody could play that long. With Howe, his stamina always amazed me. Lots of players can go for 40 minutes, but for the last 10 minutes they’re hanging on to somebody trying to catch their breath. Not Howe. Go … go … go all the time. But that’s what made him special, I think. With him, it was always that little extra that really counted. Will there be another Howe? If there is, he’ll have a lot to do.”

It doesn’t seem so long ago that I sat with Béliveau in his home the day before his 50th anniversary with the Canadiens as a player and executive. We talked about many things … the Stanley Cup teams he was on, the players on his line, the moments and events he remembered most.

“All those Stanley Cups, each one means so much,” Béliveau said. “You work so hard. You start in September and you don’t stop working. With Toe, (coach Blake) it was always first place. It’s all that counted, but one of my greatest thrills – and it’s always been team first with me – was when I was elected captain. I was not in line for it. I was not even an alternate captain at the time. I was in a cast at the time. Two months out,” he said with a sigh.

“So I’m in a cast when the boys are having the vote. Toe’s fedora is being passed around the room, and we’re dropping the little papers into it. You could vote for Dickie, for Boom, for Tom Johnson or for me. By then, I had been 33 days in a cast. I never thought for a second anybody would vote for me. I voted for Dickie.

“There was supposed to be two ballots,” Béliveau said, “and after the first, Toe told me two guys had tied. Me and Geoffrion. ‘You two will be the only guys on the second ballot,’ he said to me.”

Once again, the players tossed “little papers” into Blake’s fedora. Minutes later, an exercised “Boom Boom” now stormed out of the room.

“What’s the problem?” I asked him.

“Those bastards picked Béliveau,” he snapped.

“So what’s wrong with that?” Geoffrion was asked.

“Yeah, Boom was a little upset,” Béliveau said in his Longueuil home. “But ah … you know Boom. He was upset that day, but the next morning he was all right

“After the vote, I went up to see Mr. Selke: ‘I don’t deserve to be captain of this team.’ He said: ‘What would you want me to do? Go downstairs and tell those players they picked the wrong guy?’ ”

Red Fisher’s Top 10 Canadiens

Red’s Top 10 Canadiens combined to win 71 Stanley Cups. Here’s a look at the players profiled in this feature series:

No. 10: Serge Savard won eight Stanley Cups and was a member of the Big Three on defence with Guy Lapointe and Larry Robinson.

No. 9: Dickie Moore, a six-time Stanley Cup champion, won back-to-back scoring titles during the 1950s.

No. 8: Bob Gainey won five Stanley Cups and was one of the best defensive forwards in NHL history.

No. 7: Bernard (Boom Boom) Geoffrion, a member of six Stanley Cup teams, was the second NHL player to score 50 goals in a season.

No. 6: Defenceman Larry Robinson could do it all – skate, score and fight – en route to six Stanley Cups.

No. 5: Henri Richard won 11 Stanley Cups, an NHL record.

No. 4: Doug Harvey was the best defenceman of his time and played a key role on six Stanley Cup teams.

No. 3: Guy Lafleur, who won three NHL scoring titles, could electrify an audience like no other player with his speed and shot and was on five Stanley Cup teams.

No. 2: The legendary Maurice (Rocket) Richard was more than just a hockey player to Canadiens fans while winning eight Stanley Cups.

No. 1: Jean Béliveau spent 18 seasons with the Canadiens, winning 10 Stanley Cups while displaying unmatched class on and off the ice.

Fans share their Jean Beliveau stories, Stu on Sports blog



  1. Hobie says:

    When do the rookies have their mini camp? The end of next week?

  2. Wintercount says:

    Equipment change for Goaltenders.

    1- Picture of Patrick Roy with equipment in 1986.

    2- Picture of Carey Price with equipment in 2014.

    3- Split the difference.

  3. arcosenate says:

    Could this be the worst draft in NHL history for the Habs:


  4. Cal says:

    Where’s our weed wacker grandma smurf?
    Need our official countdown.

  5. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ Shiram

    Really good find regarding the new Rule changes for next year.

    The NHL BoD passed the changes, but it’s hard to find if the NHLPA gave its approval in late July (probably did)

    To add to your mention of the increased size of the trapezoid:

    •The width of the hashmarks outside the faceoff circles will be extended from their current 3.5 feet to five feet.

    •Prior to any overtime period, both teams will change ends and the ice will be dry-scraped by an ice resurfacer. The league hopes that the “long line changes” and the better ice surfaces will increase scoring in overtime, and thus decrease shootouts.

    •Coaches no longer have to submit a list of shootout participants as it begins. The coaches will be free as to who they will pick next.

    •Teams that ice the puck can only use one center to make the ensuring faceoff.
    *If that player attempts to get kicked out of the faceoff to buy his team time, he’ll get a two-minute delay-of-game penalty.

    •The NHL’s “situation room” will have more latitude to conduct video reviews of goals that don’t fall under the guidelines of what can be reviewed but that clearly weren’t scored legally.

    •The wording “embellishment” will be changed to allow an escalating scale of fines to repeat-offense players and coaches

    • shiram says:


      I only wrote about the trapezoid as it was the one rule that interested me the most.

      The icing one could be important too, I’ve seen all too often where the center will delay the game in that way, and the Habs have been guilty of it too.

      All in all I like those changes.

    • Cal says:

      I wonder whatever happened to the “hurry up” face off? It seems the linesmen believe they are the show these days.

  6. HabinBurlington says:

    So our boy DD has a cousin featured in the latest NFL Madden game!


  7. shiram says:


    This piece list rule changes, one I found interesting was enlarging the goalie trapezoid, I like that, gives more place for talented goalies to play the puck.

    Anyone can confirm if those are real?

  8. shiram says:

    Jersey numbers, I think I’d be upset to see so many players change their numbers as Chris proposed, I might not be old school enough, but I’ve grown to know the players with their numbers, and they somehow with the player now.

    I like that Pk and Patches have reversed numbers for one.
    Eller’s 81 is fine, but then that’s my year of birth, and he’s a player I like also.

    And it would be annoying for those already with jerseys of those players, who’ve played in the League for many years under those numbers.

    Not like Gallagher switching from 73 to 11.

    And rumours of Penner getting a tryout, sure why not? Could be a decent third liner with top 6 possibility in case of injury, or if he surprises and is motivated in camp.
    But it comes from Eklund I think so, who knows?

  9. Chris says:

    While I was thinking about junior hockey…

    For all the angst about how the QMJHL is an “offence first, no defence” league, I imagine most casual hockey fans would be surprised to see that the lowest goal-scoring league in the country last year was in fact the QMJHL.

    QMJHL games last season averaged 6.66 goals per game, which was pipped slightly by the WHL, whose scoring was markedly up last season to 6.69 goals per game. The OHL smoked the other two leagues, posting an average of 7.10 goals per game, led by the potent offences in Guelph, Erie, and London.

    Guelph led the OHL with 5 goals per game, while Portland (4.69) and Val d’Or (4.50) led the WHL and QMJHL, respectively.

    Despite those low scoring numbers and the QMJHL’s reputation for producing good defensive coaches, how many QMJHL defencemen were selected in this year’s draft? 3 out of 63. Compare that to the high-scoring OHL (12/63 defencemen drafted) or WHL (13/63), and it isn’t hard to see why so many think that there is a heavy bias against the QMJHL.

    If the QMJHL were clearly an inferior league, I could understand it. But they have won 3 of the last 4 Memorial Cups, demonstrating that the best in the QMJHL can give the best teams from the other leagues all they can handle.

    Scoring in the QMJHL has been trending downwards (7.16 to 6.99 to 6.99 to 6.66 over the past 4 years). Hopefully the reputation of the QMJHL will stop being used to diminish the exploits of its draft prospects, because there isn’t much validity to those attacks in recent years.

    • Paz says:

      On a “macro” level, here’s something to consider.

      There is no contact in Quebec until Bantam hockey, 13 and 14 yr olds, and only for Bantam AAA, AA, BB levels.

      There are, therefore, many “big kids” who choose football at 10, 11, 12 yrs of age because that’s where their size is an advantage.

      Quebec’s minor football program, all the way to the Rouge et Or in University, is thriving, and producing big, strong, elite athletes. Many are hitting the CFL, and a few are even in the NFL.

      Quebec’s minor hockey tends to produce smaller, quicker forwards and dmen. Players who can skate but are undersized have a “safe haven” until they hit Bantam, so they thrive.

      • Chris says:

        I’m not sure I buy the football argument. Football and rugby were the top games in my rural Ontario town, with all the biggest boys drifting towards those sports over hockey. Part of this was that we did not have a top hockey team in town at the time (I think we were CC), so people figured their best shot at getting anywhere in sports was via those two sports. A few of them made it onto CIAU/CIS football or rugby teams, so I guess it payed off for them in the end.

        I think there are plenty of good hockey players in the QMJHL, but there is unquestionably a bias at play among NHL scouts. If they see a 40-60 goal scorer in the QMJHL, that kid gets written off because he did it in an “offensive” league. But there are just as many high-scoring busts from the WHL and OHL.

    • Morenz7 says:

      Yes, but how many goals did the Q let in? (bah dum bah!)

  10. Maritime Ronn says:

    As the Habs Training Camp approaches, there may/will be many questions about what is going on, and questions as to WHY things happen, or look weird or out of place.

    Here is understanding many do not like discussing the Business of Hockey or the 2013 CBA, yet it has specific Rules and Guidelines about how things happen – including Training Camp.
    This is all covered by Section 15:4 of the CBA:
    A few highlights.

    1)The CBA specifically limits how long training camps may be (20 days for veterans, 27 for rookies), but doesn’t specifically enforce a minimum length, nor does it specifically say when camps start.

    2) Clubs can have no fewer than 6 and no more than 8 Exhibition Games in a season and players can’t be forced into playing one in the first three days of camp, or into playing exhibition games on three consecutive days.
    The Habs have 7 games.

    Some other stuff:
    – The first day of Training Camp will be dedicated (and exclusively limited) to office activities, such as medicals/physicals, fitness testing, photographs and other public relationsrelated matters.

    – During the first four (4) days of on-ice activity at Training Camp (days 2 through 5), ice-time activities will be limited to 1.75 hours and off-ice activities will be limited to 1.25 hours per day, except on Exhibition Game days where these limits shall not apply to Players playing in the Exhibition Game.

    **(d) Players shall be provided with two (2) mandatory days off during Training Camp, with each Player being provided one (1) day off during the first half of Training Camp and the other day off during the second half of Training Camp.

    Exhbition Games;

    – A Club shall be permitted to dress a minimum of eight (8) veterans for any Exhibition Game.
    A veteran shall constitute either:
    (1) a forward or defenseman who played in thirty (30) NHL Games during the previous season,
    (2) a goaltender who either dressed in fifty (50) or more NHL Games or played in thirty (30) or more NHL Games in the previous season,
    (3) a first round draft choice from the most recent year’s Entry Draft.(4) any Player who has played one-hundred (100) or more career NHL Games.

  11. HabinBurlington says:

    I have always like Marleau as a talented player, but not sure I want the Habs to give up a prospect and two roster players for him at this point in his career.

    As this writer states, if Marleau isn’t willing to waive his NTC, then there really is nothing to this rumour.


    • Un Canadien errant says:

      With his new contract extension, he can’t even be a deadline acquisition for us. We might need a stopgap for a year or two, but his three years at $6.6M, that’s Vincent Lecavalier territory, and essentially rules him out.

    • Cal says:

      SJ was nuts to extend him and Joe for 3 years.
      Now, they have to live with it. (insert evil laugh here)

      • Un Canadien errant says:

        It wasn’t nuts for them to extend productive veteran leaders of the team at market rates, what was nuts was the ‘complete 360’ management did in the summer, announcing there would be big changes and stripping Big Joe of his captaincy, and undermining their two stars before their new deals even kicked in.

        Vancouver handled that better. They also locked up the faces of the franchise, they realize they’re married to the Sedins, and that even though they both had poor seasons last year, they’re all in. So they said all the right things, about injuries and coaching and system changes, and that the brothers will turn it around. The team also brought in a little grit and toughness, and a winger in Radim Vrbata who might be the complement that line needs. Nice work.

        Doug Wilson should have realized he’s in bed with Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau, and that he now had to lie in it. Instead, he ‘messed’ the bed.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Agree, while something indeed hasn’t worked out in the playoffs with this Sharks team, they have had an incredible run for quite some time now. Can’t help but wonder how that Sharks team does the past few years with a Price, Quick or Lundqvist in net.

        • Cal says:

          Seriously? SJ has done nothing in the playoffs with those 2 leaders floundering. I maintain it was a nutty move to sign them at all.

          • shiram says:

            Letting them go for nothing would have been much worse.

          • Dust says:

            disagree. I t would have been stupid to let them go. they are great players.

          • Cal says:

            @ Shiram- After all these years at not having playoff success, and end of the year trade would have been preferable.
            @Dust- playoffs are where it matters. Those 2 are average or worse during crunch time.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      a rumour for the rumour is that neither Joe or Patrick will waive their NTC

  12. Un Canadien errant says:

    I just woke up form a dream that starred P.K. He was on the ice doing his thing, it was a big game, forget the details, but he was whirling around the ice like he did against the Lightning in the playoffs, all the way around the offensive zone, no one could get the puck off him.


    The confusing part was that during the shift, his number kept changing, he variously wore numbers 24 or 14, and near the end was wearing number 1. I thought the latter was really pushing it, that he was setting himself up for criticism for the boast, the traditional goalie number, and deciding to wear Jacques Plante’s retired jersey.

    The thing that I noticed though was that while he played with the same strength and skill and panache, and he still exhibited all the energy and determination and magnificence, there was a different tone to his play. There was less febrility, it looked and felt more like desire, like there was a plan and an end goal. Instead of the opponents and his own teammates not being sure what he was doing with the puck, it now felt pre-determined that the puck would end up in their net, the opposition knew it, the fans knew it, everyone knew it.

    It was like watching the ball bouncing around a spinning roulette wheel that’s rigged to hit zero. Sure, it looks chaotic and unpredictable, but you have this inner confidence because you know it’s only going to end one way.

    I’m going to go ahead and say that it’s a good omen for the season.

    It’s somewhere between a toothless attack and a vicious homage.–Paul Rudd


  13. Chris says:

    Since I would love to get an Eller jersey, it would make me a lot happier if he ditched that goofy number.

    That goes for most of the Habs. After watching the Guelph Storm’s great season, where there wasn’t a single non-goalie with a number above 27, I realize that I really don’t care for the silly high numbers. It is a silly annoyance, something that really shouldn’t cause anybody to care one way or the other, but there it is.

    It just seems strange that no NHL team more close resembles an NFL offensive line or linebacker corps than the Montreal Canadiens. That is the unfortunate by-product of having retired so many of the traditional hockey numbers (less than 30 for position players, 1 and 30-35 for goaltenders). With all the retired jerseys, the only traditional numbers still available are 6, 8 (Prust), 11 (Gallagher), 13 (rarely worn), 15, 20 (Malhotra), 21, 22 (Weise), 24 (Tinordi), 25, 26, 27 (Galchenyuk) and 28.

    I’m hoping that Pacioretty takes the now open #26…that number belongs on a top offensive player! (From my avatar, you might guess that I am biased…)

    PK should ditch the #76 and go back to the #6 he wore in the OHL. That is a number more befitting a guy on his way to joining the best Habs defencemen in history.

    I would love to see Eller in the #21. That was Carbonneau’s number for years centering the 3rd line, and it was also Higgins’ number. Eller reminds me a little bit of Higgins: great work ethic, reasonably strong on the boards, can’t shoot the puck in the ocean from the beach…

    Beaulieu should ditch the #40 and take #28. A defenceman could do worse than taking on the number that Eric Desjardins and Karl Dykhuis wore well for the Habs.

    Emelin would look great in #13. Europeans don’t have the same superstitions around that number, but it would be bad luck for any opposing forward entering the zone with his head down on Emelin’s side. Very fitting, methinks.

    Since so many of you think that Desharnais is only half a player, he would look much better in #25, roughly half his current #51.

    You’re still going to have a few silly numbers, but at least it looks more like a hockey team.

    If you’ve made it this far, you are very welcome for the 2-minute distraction from what you should otherwise be doing. 🙂

    • Kooch7800 says:

      #First world problems lol

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      My feelings exactly. We’re kind of stuck now with the football numbers, having retired all those jerseys, but I can’t reconcile myself with numbers in the fourties and sixties and seventies, they don’t feel right. They’re hard to keep straight. Mavid keeps stumping me.

    • Cal says:

      4 paras on this? Gaaah!

    • Bash says:

      In this digital age we should go to evolving version #’s.


      Galchenyuk becomes 10.2
      Tinordi 18.1


      Well you get the idea

      “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

    • mchenske4 says:

      Agreed! I hate those stupid jersey numbers….

    • HabinBurlington says:

      New players, New numbers. Each to make their own identity, to me Gretzky started this change and no way in the world would it have looked right now for him to be a #9 when he was a #99.

      I like the new numbers.

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      Not sure I get this. Hockey numbers run from 1-99, the only numbers I would consider odd would be a fraction, a square root perhaps, something along those lines.

      • Chris says:

        They do now. Back in the 1980’s, it was pretty rare to see position players given a number above 30. The goalies were 30-35. And rookies were given jerseys in the high 30’s and low 40’s, often taking a lower number when they cracked the team.

        As mentioned above, Gretzky’s popularity changed that. When he wore #99, it became acceptable for everyday players to wear higher numbers. Lemieux took that #99 and reversed it, giving yet another superstar with a high number. Ray Bourque, upon the retirement of Phil Esposito’s #7, took on #77 back in 1987. With those three players, perhaps the top 3 in the NHL, all wearing high numbers, the practice became acceptable and the tradition of wearing 1-30 has basically waned in most markets.

        So yeah, it has evolved. I still find it goofy though. It might be because my other favourite sport is soccer, where the numbers are generally kept between 1 and 15 for the starters, with a few players wearing higher numbers in more recent years.

        So the #10 of Pele is also the #10 of Rivelino, Zico, Rivaldo, Kaka, Ronaldinho and most recently Neymar. There is something kind of cool about the number being associated with the position instead of a single player, even though all subsequent #10 players for Brazil have played in Pele’s lengthy shadow.

    • New says:

      The confusion doesn’t end there. During the Rangers series the media constantly talked about McDonough (27) this or that. Quite often McDonough was on the bench and the defensively responsible Moore (17) was doing the chores 🙂

      I think Moore (RFA) is still unsigned by the Rangers. Nickel and diming him at 850K qualifying. I hope they get a chance to regret that. Good D-man.

    • Dust says:

      I love the higher numbers and have no beef with them.
      Maybe it’s my age. The best players had the big numbers 99, 66. need i say more?

  14. 24 Cups says:

    Somewhere down the road, this guy could be the diamond in the rough that the Habs need for the right side. In many ways, he just might be Montreal’s best prospect in terms of his NHL ceiling.


    24 Cups

    • formerly known as the hc says:

      The kid plays in the ‘Dub. If he can put up some numbers there, there should be no doubting of his toughness.

      -The beatings will continue until morale improves-

    • Phil C says:

      I am also excited about what Sekac, De La Rose, and Andrighetto can do this year either in Montreal or Hamilton. Not to mention an up and coming 20 year old named Galchenyuk, (you may have heard of him). And Beaulieu seems poised to have a break-out season.

      Is it just me, or has it been a while since the Habs had so many good prospects?

      • 24 Cups says:

        Phil – I was thinking of prospects who are presently not NHLers. As I’ve stated many times before, this year Therrien needs to take the reins off of Galchenyuk. It’s the easiest way for the team to bump up it’s goal production.

        24 Cups

        • Phil C says:

          I understood your post, just a poor attempt at humour on my part. My point of the Galchenyuk comment was simply to state that I am looking forward to watching him play this year.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Read that a few days ago Steve, a nice story to read indeed. Looking back at the pressures Price faced those first years in Montreal, it is no wonder perhaps the atmosphere of Montreal and the NHL had some negative affects on the young man. Growing up in the environment he did, then playing Junior hockey in a town like Spokane was a far different world than the fishbowl of Montreal.

      It is so great to see how he survived those early years and is now an elite goalie in the world with great leadership for our team.

      He remains my favourite player on the present Habs roster.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Subban has the flair and razzmatazz but I still feel Price is the face of the franchise. Moving forward, he’ll have to be like Patrick Roy on a team that doesn’t have quite the same amount of talent as some of the other NHL squads.

        On a personal note, I am presently experiencing sciatica which has put my fall golf season on the shelf. Woe is me.

        24 Cups

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Ouch, had that a number of years ago, much empathy for you. Good luck with it, enjoy watching the golf on TV I guess. Really looking forward to the Ryder Cup, Captain Watson has to make his captains picks today.

          I think this Ryder Cup will be interesting, I think American team will really embrace the underdog role and I think with Tiger not present, they may really find themselves becoming a team finally. That isn’t to blame Tiger, but I just don’t think his personality really fits what the Ryder Cup embodies. Tiger trained himself to be a very successful player that prided himself on being the best, in a very self confident manner.

          All the best my friend. Are you attending the Summit this year?

          • 24 Cups says:

            I was going to attend with my son-in-law on the original date but then the Summit got flipped to the end of November. My daughter is celebrating her 30th birthday on Nov 28th which my wife and I are hosting. That killed the Summit for me for the second year in a row.

            I hope to attend next year’s Summit when the Habs host the Las Vegas Poker Chips.

            24 Cups

          • frontenac1 says:

            Gleneagles is in a beautiful setting in Perthshire amigo. Right at the start of the Highlands. I sort of remember it from last year.

        • Chris says:

          Make pilates your friend. I have two discs in my lower back that frequently herniate, and my physio typically consists of a lot of pilates-like exercises. If you stay with it, you don’t need to worry about it as much in the future. I still get the odd minor bout, but I haven’t had a crippling one for about 7 years now.

        • Un Canadien errant says:

          I’ll second Chris and say that plates should be your friend. Start doing heavy squats and deadlifts when you hit CÉGEP, load on the weights, and build a really strong foundation in your core and lower body, and you won’t worry about your back in the future. Or your knees.

  15. HabFab says:

    Players under contract for this season;

    GOAL (5) :
    Budaj, Peter
    Condon, Mike
    MacDonald, Joey
    Price, Carey
    Tokarski, Dustin

    DEFENSE (14):
    Beaulieu, Nathan
    Bennett, Mac
    Dietz, Darren
    Drewiske, Davis
    Ellis, Morgan
    Emelin, Alexei
    Gilbert, Tom
    Markov, Andrei
    Nygren, Magnus
    Pateryn, Greg
    Subban, PK
    Thrower, Dalton
    Tinordi, Jarred
    Weaver, Mike

    FORWARDS (25):
    Andrighetto, Sven
    Bourque, Rene
    Bournival, Michaël
    Bozon, Tim
    Carr, Daniel
    Crisp, Connor
    de la Rose, Jacob
    Desharnais, David
    Dumont, Gabriel
    Ellar, Lars
    Fournier, Stefan
    Galchenyuk, Alex
    Gallagher, Brendan
    Holland, Patrick
    Hudon, Charles
    Malhotra, Manny
    Moen, Travis
    Nevins, Jack
    Pacioretty, Max
    Parenteau, PA
    Plekanec, Tomas
    Prust, Brandon
    Sekac, Jiri
    Thomas, Christian
    Weise, Dale

    – does not include the five 19-year old’s which may slide.
    – Hamilton has also signed Joe Finley D, David Makowski D, Bobby Shea D, Jake Dowell F and TJ Hensick F to AHL contracts

  16. HabFab says:

    Does someone have the training camp dates? Believe I saw “B” post them a couple of weeks past.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      I might be off a day, but it appears Rookie camp will be Sept. 13-16, and the main camp Sept 18th.
      First day of NHL Camp is medicals only and it’s usually preceded by the Habs golf tournament

  17. Habfan10912 says:

    The Bruins payroll issue, UFA destinations and Vinny and Thorton trade rumors.


    • Kooch7800 says:

      I don’t believe Vinny isn’t going anywhere. He is 34 and signed for 4 more years at 4.5. It was a moronic contract that everyone knew was about 3 years too many and to expensive. The only way he leaves is if the Flyers eat the majority of the contract. I hope he gets bought out twice.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Here’s wondering how close the habs really were to the Vinny contract?

      • Un Canadien errant says:

        Vincent Lecavalier’s contract was the major reason I could stay calm about the Daniel Brière contract.

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          ..and contracts have to play themselves out until the end.
          So far, it shows the Habs acquired P.A. Parenteau and a 5th Round pick for no player or draft pick assets.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            You are right it has now benefited the habs by getting PA. Again, like you say though we will need to see if that was a good thing or not.

            I think the mistake with Briere was he was a centre that they were trying to get to play Right Wing and had that discussion with him coming into the season. He was effective at 4th line centre in the playoffs but was never successful as a winger with the habs really. We needed a RW which I am happy is what PA plays. Hopefully he finds some of the magic he had with Islanders

          • Un Canadien errant says:

            Yes. I was afraid Danny’s deal would end up being a Tomas Kaberle contract, one we’d have to wait out, work around. Pleasant surprise that in the end he was a free agent who didn’t kill us, chipped in despite not really fitting in, and provided us with assets.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          It is a brutal contract. I did not care for the Briere contract either

    • Maritime Ronn says:


      That’s an interesting article.

      While some believe sports and politics should never mix, history has shown that sport has more than often been used as a political tool.
      A few examples;
      1936 Olympics Berlin
      1972 Olympics Munich
      1980 Olympics Moscow – US boycott
      1984 Olympics Los Angeles – USSR boycott

      Far from making this about politics – or which countries are right or wrong, here is hoping that hockey fans park their political emotions when it comes to players that just happened to be born in a specific country…and just enjoy their skill and entertainment.

      As for Ovechkin and Malkin, it is never out of the realm of possibility they could pack up and leave if the fan/political media heat gets turned up on them.

      Both are multi-millionaires to date.(assuming no major bad habits…)
      As a 28 year olds, Ovechkin has already earned $65M and Malkin has already earned $55M.

      As for the ability of a superstar to make money playing in the KHL, not to forget the Ilya Kovalchuk 4 year/$40M contract he signed for St. Petersburg only last summer…and that is a very income tax friendly country.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Your last paragraph could be the most important part of the issue. The contracts which an Ovechkin or Malkin sign in the KHL (if they were to go) don’t need to be as large as the NHL contracts in order to be more player friendly when it comes to take home pay.

        I think the biggest stumbling block is the “amenities” of playing in North America, and the fact the NHL is still a far superior league in terms of quality of competition. However, if Bettman indeed decides it is time to cash out the owners some big bucks by way of Expansion the league quickly could water itself down some.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          I agree with the point that watering down the league with more teams is a bad idea especially considering there are teams who are really struggling financially…i.e. Florida…Carolina etc. Relocate them instead of expansion. Problem is then there is no expansion fee….Bettman likes his cash.

          Malkin keeps having pictures posted of him with pictures of Putin so I wouldn’t be shocked if eventually we saw him head to the KHL. He has made money and has a cup ring

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          GMorning Burling

          No doubt the NHL has the best competition as it draws the best players from around the world

          The 2013 stat by nationalities showed that only 51% of NHL players were Canadian born, while 49% were from other nations.


          As for “amenities”…the rich and famous always find what they are looking for or ‘need’ regardless of country and economic status ( see Dear Leader-North Korea)

  18. Maritime Ronn says:

    Good morning

    Yesterday, there was some talk about the Habs signing some depth players and if it didn’t work out, how much Cap Hit could be buried in the AHL and what was the threshold.

    The new 2012/13 CBA provided an exact formula about how much Cap Hit a team would incur if it sent a player to the AHL.

    Formula: Player Cap hit minus (Minimum Salary + $375,000)
    Because this year NHL minimum salary is $550,000
    The formula becomes:
    Player Cap Hit minus $925,000.

    Therefore, any Cap Hit of $925,000 and under for a player that passes waivers and is sent to the AHL, would not count against the team’s Cap.
    On the other hand, if a player had a Cap Hit of $1,925,000, the NHL team would still be responsible for $1,000,000 – that being the portion above the $925,000 threshold this year.

    This became known as the Wade Redden Rule.

    In 2008, the Rangers signed Redden to a 6 contract worth $39 million.
    After his performance continually declined, the team waived Redden to its AHL affiliate for 2 years and created cap space at the NHL level.
    Not 1 single dollar counted against the Rangers Cap at that time.

    That loophole gave the rich teams opportunities to bury their mistakes and an unfair advantage – hence, the new CBA Redden Rule.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Hi Ronn! I was amazed at the sudden decline in performance of Redden. Like our Gomez he seemed to just lose it over night.
      Is it the money? Do some players just lose that edge? Do they become lazy in their off season workout regiment? Is it the pressure to live up to the huge contract.

      I’d love to hear from Redden and Gomez and get their opinion of what happened. I’ll probably never know. Mind boggling.

  19. rhino514 says:

    Why is Penner not signed? He´s big and can score between 15 to 20 goals a year, I don´t get why he would even be be forced to attend camps as a try out. There must be something up with the guy methinks.

    • Cal says:

      He has a bad case of flapjack back.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Age: turns 32 in 3 weeks.
      Contract Demands: ??? (just finished $2M)
      Scouting report: ” Could stand to use his size more in every game situation. Does not display enough game-to-game consistency. Gets in trouble when he stops moving his feet.”

      After his trade to Washington, he had 1 goal in 18 games.
      He did have a nice start to his year in Anaheim, but his line mates were Getzlaf and Corey Perry…

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning rhino. Perhaps cap management is coming into play here. Teams are almost forced to allow spaces for new players in order to facilitate the cap.

  20. Habitant in Surrey says:

    And, people ask, ‘Why are You still a Habs Fan after all these many years ?’

    I just keep My answer simple …”Jean Beliveau, Jacques Plante, Henri Richard, Yvon Cournoyer, John Ferguson, Larry Robinson, Bob Gainey, Peter Mahovlich, Serge Savard, J.C. Tremblay, Dickey Moore, Boom Boom, Patrick Roy, Ken Dryden, Claude Provost, Jimmy Roberts, Doug Harvey, Toe Blake”

    I sure save on thinking of appropriate adjectives.

    Because none of these Guys needed an adjective.

  21. Marc10 says:

    Just watched the tennis ‘highlights’. Playing tennis in 40 degree heat is nothing short of nuts.

    Australia runs into those issues pretty regularly now. They’ve got a roof over the centre court to cool things down, but I don’t imagine that’s an option in NY. Still, 40 degrees… That’s insane!

  22. Un Canadien errant says:

    We had a discussion last year about Tim Tebow playing in the CFL, and I argued that as bad an NFL quarterback he was, he’d be even worse in the Canadian game, with his poor decision making and vision, the fatter ball, and his laboured throwing motion. Some people expressed surprise at that, thinking that the CFL is just a weaker version of the NFL, so a borderline NFL QB should be a good CFL QB, but it doesn’t work that way. The game is different not just in size or talent level, there are differences in the game that are more than just nuances. A quarterback who can’t read the defence, go through his progression, and deliver the ball accurately can’t succeed in the NFL, and definitely not in the CFL.

    Now we hear that Michael Sam has been approached by the Alouettes to play CFL ball, and contrary to Tim Tebow, he’d be a great fit in the Canadian game. There are lots of pass rushers of his general size and skill level who do very well in the CFL but struggle playing the run in the NFL, where being relatively undersized is a big drawback. Further, some American players can hone their game and return to the NFL, like Cameron Wake, a player who’s roughly comparable to Mr. Sam. The Chargers had Cordarro Law trying out for a job this summer, he’s an ex-Stampeder, and he did very well and almost won a job outright. He’ll be on the practice squad for now, but as injuries occur he’ll almost definitely get to play this year.


    It’s somewhere between a toothless attack and a vicious homage.–Paul Rudd


    • Da Hema says:

      The CFL game is different from the NFL version, so success in one league does not guarantee it in the other. The Alouettes’ experiment with former NFL quarterback Vince Ferragamo in the 1980s was proof of that. Warren Moon, on the other hand, was a complete success in both leagues. It really wasn’t until the early 1970s that it became accepted wisdom that the NFL has superior athletes. Indeed, up to that point, money for the players in both leagues was roughly comparable, and black players had far less racism directed towards them — and better opportunities — in the CFL. I think clearly the NFL today has better athletes, but I frequently find the CFL games more entertaining — and CFL players are generally down-to-earth and likeable (unlike the NFL’s).

      • Marc10 says:

        Yes. Fewer felons in the CFL (total and on average).

        I like the CFL. It’s a very different game. Molson Stadium does the job too. A great place to catch a game.

  23. TorontoHabsFan says:

    Hey All,

    I was just wondering if anybody knew what this “Mastercard Pre-sale for October Games” was all about?

    Do you need a Mastercard to buy tickets or is it just a promotional thing (a la “Molson 3 Stars”)?

    • savethepuck says:

      I am pretty sure it is just promotional ( I have never bought tickets by this method ) and you can purchase with any credit card. It is a monthly thing.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

  24. JohnBellyful says:

    [strides to the mike, adjusts its height, then leans into it]
    [walks away with a spring in his step]

  25. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Gee, I can’t wait to hear from all those who won’t be watching Cherry tell us how ignorant and rude he was last night! 😀

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  26. Un Canadien errant says:

    An excellent, relatively even-handed portrait of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.


    It’s somewhere between a toothless attack and a vicious homage.–Paul Rudd


  27. piper says:

    As frustrating as Vanek was to watch I think Penner would be worse in that regard. Trade for a true power forward or leave a spot for the kids to fight over.

    • dr. schmutzdeker says:


    • GrosBill says:

      Tough to make the comparison.

      Penner’s salary would likely be comparable to Dale Weise’s, not Vanek’s. But we will compare him to a 6 million dollar player anyway?

      If Penner wasn’t frustrating, he would be getting big bucks instead of looking for a job in Sept.

      More of a Colby Armstrong like acquisition than Vanek at this point.

  28. HabinBurlington says:

    If your interested in reading something different but hockey related, here is the obituary of Frank Udvari who was a longtime referee in the original 6 days, and he happened to be the referee during the infamous Rocket Richard game leading to his suspension.

    An intriguing read.


  29. burlingtondave says:

    Info for scavanau. They still make Brador but it is mot the taste you remember. The alcohol content is now less than Ex. I can buy it in Burlinton where I live. Good luck.

  30. habstrinifan says:

    Belated happy birthday to the classy legend.. Monsieur Jean Béliveau.

    “Protest Rogers blackout of Habs game…sign at:


  31. Un Canadien errant says:

    from: http://www.thespec.com/sports-story/4805270-longtime-dogs-play-by-play-voice-lands-with-flames/

    Finding a replacement

    The Hamilton Bulldogs say they expect to have a replacement for radio play-by-play commentator Derek Wills in place sometime next week.

    As soon as it was announced that he was leaving after 13 years behind the microphone in Hamilton, close to 40 applications began pouring in.

    “The quality of the candidates we got has been unbelievable,” says team president Stephen Ostaszewicz.

    He says resumés have arrived from coast to coast and into the United States from people doing Tier II junior games, Canadian Hockey League junior games and even current American Hockey League broadcasters. One even came from someone who’d called WHA games back in the day.

    Jeff Storey, program director at 900CHML which carries the games, says at least 10 were serious candidates. That list has been whittled down to five.

    The person ultimately chosen will be a full-time employee of the Bulldogs.

    Somehow Bob Cole remains employed by Sportsnet.

    It’s somewhere between a toothless attack and a vicious homage.–Paul Rudd


    • HabinBurlington says:

      I left them a voice mail saying I could do the job, it was loud in the bar when I left the message, they must not have heard my phone number clearly as I have yet to get a callback!

      • Un Canadien errant says:

        I tried to post another point, which the Gremlins gobbled up, that it was refreshing that he didn’t get the Canadiens’ job because he was too excitable, kind of unlike the Leafs’ Homer Joe Bowen and the Bruins’ Jack Edwards. And kudos to Derek Wills for asking for and acting on the feedback. I enjoyed his work the last couple of seasons.

        • habstrinifan says:

          I was surprised when he did not get that job also. But last week he spoke on TSN690 and very candidly talked about the rejection and how he came away from that experience.

          After earnestly praising the performance of Bartlett (the man who got the job), Derek Wills spoke about the disappointment and how he asked for and took to heart several evaluations of his style and presentation and made recommended adjustments in pitch and volume especially.
          It was a great example for anyone who has ever been turned down for a job to hear and emulate.

          He sounds like a great person and congratulations to him on the Calgary job and much success.

  32. HabinBurlington says:

    Hobie, it appears $925K is the amount of a players salary that can be buried in the AHL, reference this article with the Leafs Liles last year shows that.


  33. JUST ME says:

    Reality bites sometimes. The results from the poll question clearly shows that a lot of people, much more than i thought, feel like Don Cherry is relevant in today`s hockey world. I beg to differ but understand that it is a fact that many out there are still in the 70 `s hockey mindset and would rather listen to a good ole redneck instead of dealing with hockey as it is and how it is evolving…Le sigh …

    • Hobie says:

      It’s 41% on HIO. Most other team sites it would probably be 75%. So as much as people don’t like or watch him here, he’s extremely popular overall. I was suprised he got 41% of the vote here as well.

      When Grapes talks hockey he still knows the game and players very well.

      Hobie’s Habs Video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byrgZ90b5Yw&feature=youtu.be

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I may not agree with Cherry much on “issues” but I admit that when convenient I watch him. Even if I end up complaining about him, I have much less use for Ron Maclean than Don Cherry. At least Don Cherry is who he is, and doesn’t hide behind any notions of who he is. Ron Maclean on the other hand loves to have Don Cherry get the message out and then hide behind the fact Don said it and not Ron. He has become a very very annoying personality to me. I am so glad to see he essentially got a demotion in the new Hockey Media conglomerate.

        • Hobie says:

          I agree 100% Burly. I find Ron Maclean has become bitter and crusty. I also find that he has a thorn in his side when it comes to the Habs. He lets Cherry or PJ Stock do all his dirty work and edges them on.

          I don’t mind Cherry occasionally picking on the Habs because we crushed his dreams of winning the Stanley Cup. He comes right out and says he’s a Bruins and Leafs fan.

          PJ Stock on the other hand. He’s from Quebec, he played for the Habs for a short period of time and hosted a radio show in Montreal. So he heard all about fans getting upset the team is smallish and he knows how sensitive the fan base is regarding certain topics. So he gets his jollies throwing little jabs in about the Habs when he can and Maclean tries to push the right buttons so he does it. Those two guys I can’t stand. Grapes is a good man in my books.

          Hobie’s Habs Video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byrgZ90b5Yw&feature=youtu.be

        • New says:

          I agree as well. Maclean really began to show his colors when Rogers got the rights while Cherry just kept doing what they pay Cherry to do. Everywhere you go in the country where Ron and Don are appearing people are looking at Maclean as the conduit to Cherry. They recognize Cherry, wave and shout, and tell their friends that Cherry gave a thumbs up back. He is very popular. Not here obviously. But here isn’t everywhere. We often forget that.

      • Chris says:

        I think you would be surprised. Don Cherry’s view of the way hockey should be played does not line up as well as you probably believe with the majority of hockey fans. I do agree that Montreal fans are more likely to be anti-Cherry due to his Boston and Toronto sympathies, but I would be well and truly shocked if it was anywhere close to 75% of fans of other Canadian teams that watch Don Cherry.

        There are an awful lot of Canadians, myself included, that have long since grown tired of Don Cherry’s schtick. He is basically a stale product at this point. Some still tune in to see who he is going to offend that week (there are blogs that follow this each week), but the rest of us just use the intermission to do something more productive and/or less annoying.

        • Hobie says:

          I’ve lived in Calgary, Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto. People love him in every home, pub and hockey rink I’ve ever been to.

          Hobie’s Habs Video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byrgZ90b5Yw&feature=youtu.be

          • montreal ace says:

            Hobie you are right about Cherry and the fact lots of people just love the guy

          • habstrinifan says:

            You are right re his popularity. It may be more like fame now than actual popularity for I, like Chris, now find him stale and almost annoying. He has however earned his fame.

            “Protest Rogers blackout of Habs game…sign at:


          • Chris says:

            And for my anecdotal evidence, not one of my hockey friends watches Don Cherry, with fans of Montreal, Vancouver, Boston, Edmonton, Toronto, and Pittsburgh included. The reasons range from that he has become boring to that he represents the side of hockey that they detest.

            Lots and lots of people do love Don Cherry. But lots and lots of people do not, with many outright detesting him. The fact that he has chosen to alienate so many of French-Canadian and various European backgrounds in a country of immigrants is certainly one factor that makes me disbelieve the 75% number.

            If we’re talking white Canadians whose family has been in the country for a few generations? Sure.

            Some of the rest of us do like Cherry. I admit to having found him amusing in the mid-1980’s. By the mid 1990’s, he was already pretty stale, re-hashing the same stories over and over and over. Now we’re 20 years beyond that, and he has nothing left except the curmudgeonly grandfather smacking down those uppity youngsters (Subban, Crosby, Hertl, Ovechkin, etc.) who don’t play the game the “right” way.

          • frontenac1 says:

            You’re hangin” with the wrong Homies amigo. Try kickin “it up a notch. It’s all good.Saludos!

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      There’s a chicken and the egg quality to his popularity too. I won’t deny that he was a phenomenon when he first appeared on TV, the rough around the edges brawler and excitable blowhard, he was different and an attraction. In the last couple of decades though, his act has grown tiresome and irrelevant, but he maintains a lot of his popularity due to the fact that he’s given the plum assignment and the pulpit every Saturday night. If the CBC had vision and integrity, he would have been pulled and his Q rating would have plummeted. He’d still be on minor shows and on radio, but not the mega-star we’re lead to believe he is.


      An analogy to the HNIC theme can be made. It’s undeniably a good little ditty, catchy, but what makes it such a hallowed tradition is that it has been played countless time on HNIC and “La Soirée du Hockey”, we grew up with it and associate it with our very fond memories of our respective favourite teams. We collectively have made it what it is, the cultural phenomenon it had become, by growing up with it and tearing around the living room carpet, dancing to its strains, humming the bars. Ta da ta da da DAH, da da dam!

      When the heirs to the composers were locked in a battle with the CBC for more residuals for the song, I was squarely in the CBC’s camp, and was glad they didn’t overpay, there’s no sense in throwing away money on a jingle, there has to be a limit. Negotiations are tough, but I felt the heirs underestimated the good fortune their family had that the song was presented so often to the Canadian public that it became an alternate national anthem. And they kind of cheapened the song in my eyes, along with TSN, which plays it on a June afternoon while covering the draft, crushing the golden goose.

    • New says:

      I think you have to be careful as well. HIO is a niche on the net (164320th world wide) with a pretty limited viewership. Habseyesontheprize who many here disparage comes in 111843th for example and Hockeys Future at 11225th. HIO doesn’t even make the top 500 in Canada sites visited (5629th) while TSN is 92nd, Bleacherreport 128th, Rds 396th, etc.

      All to say the opinions here are pretty much confined to a small segment of the population and it feeds on itself. People with divergent opinions get shoved away and the talk focuses on how bad Bouchard is playing, Ian’s summit, or whatever else interests us. So the HIO poll on Cherry is remarkable in that it reflects any dissent from the locally adopted view. In other locations he is likely held in greater esteem, and when he drops by a franchised restaurant and tells your table you’re ugly enough to be hockey players we eat it up.

      So yeah, reality bites the big fish in the puddle as much as it irritates the tiny fish in an ocean of differing views 🙂

    • JUST ME says:

      In an era when many think that statistics are the essemce of thruth i believe that a picture tells a thousand word and that the kind of comments done on Cherry`s corner are precious because they show reality and expose cheaters.
      I guess my problem with the old guy is that he never gets challenged. McLean sits there like a yes man and should make Cherry accountable for his comments. It`s a publicized fact that Cherry`s comments are not those of the CBC but whose responsibility is it then ? Of course if need be he will be forced to come back on the subject a week after but that should not be.

      And honestly if he was to be held responsible live on the spot for his words it would make for some damn good tv .

  34. Mattyleg says:

    Looks like we’re going to be seat-neighbours at the summit game!

    …you’d better hope the kiss-cam comes nowhere near us…

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  35. Hobie says:

    As much as I like power forwards I’d have to say “no thanks” to Dustin Penner. He plays like a power forward maybe 2 out of every 10 games. He’s always injured and there’s a reason he’s played for so many teams.

    Hobie’s Habs Video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byrgZ90b5Yw&feature=youtu.be

  36. Mavid ® says:


    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

    • Cal says:

      My boss at work tells me I haven’t been poulin my weight lately, and if he had his way I would be out theodore. Funny, I thought I exel by my boss is the Manson, so vokouner or later, when the penney drops, he’ll nuke me, that bleeping racicot. Hell, I’d rather be on the beach with all the sund, stroming my guitar and a bergeron the grill, but I have bills to pay and Dumont to climb.

      G’morning, Mavid. Sweet pic.

    • JohnBellyful says:

      assists defenceman Randy Holt amassed in 395 NHL games while racking up 1,438 penalty minutes
      th player to score 500 goals in NHL history: Peter Bondra
      -23-36 Marilyn Monroe’s measurements
      stars in the United States flag … in 1867
      name of song performed by Devo (“I’m envious of your IQ of 37 … Your lack of brains just drives me crazy.”)
      Psalm __ : “Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity / For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb …”
      Days, British TV mini-series “set in the five weeks between the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand at Sarajevo and the outbreak of the First World War,” broadcast earlier this year
      consecutive months food stamp enrolment in the United States has topped 45 million
      -24 Ticats defeat Argos in today’s Labour Day classic

      • Mavid ® says:

        wow that is some very interesting trivia..

        Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Did you hear the news JB? Hamilton is hosting the game today, finally the Labour Day weekend will be back to normal, unfortunately that included the Riders beating the Bombers yesterday.

        • JohnBellyful says:

          Finally, the stadium is ready. Will wonders never cease?
          Well, I hope not, Burl, not for another few hours so the Ticats can actually play a complete game and, miracles of miracles, win!!!
          BTW, I’ve updated my list of 37 notable items

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Apparantly 6,000 seats unavailable today along with some of the private boxes. But at least they are finally playing football in the Hammer. My neighbours are season ticket holders and are quite excited today will be #25 on your notable list.

            Have a great day John, enjoy the game, will be hot and muggy for the game, good weather for Tiger Cats isn’t it?

            Edit: John, where are your seats for the Summit? Will i need to shed some weight to make room for you to get past me in the aisle?

          • JohnBellyful says:

            Haven’t received them yet — and I live closer to Ian than you do.
            Come to think of it I only put a 37-cent stamp on the return envelope. (It had been in my wallet for a while.) Hmmmm.

            6,000 seats available? What a surprise — when fans have to wait until the 11th hour to find where the game is going to be played for real.

            Hot and muggy — yeah, Tigers thrive in those conditions. The Argos haven’t a chance
            (But should Toronto win, you might not see me around here until … say… the Summit? Christmas?)

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Here I thought you never opened that wallet up! Sorry, I may not have been clear, the new stadium will eventually seat 24,000 people, but 6,000 of those seats aren’t available for use today as the stadium isn’t really complete. They are pretty sure though that most of the washrooms will have some running water though.

          • JohnBellyful says:

            Misread 6,000 seats as being available, not unavailable.
            My bad. My stupid. My life in four words.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Rodney Harrison.

      • Cal says:

        Dragging out the Chargers, eh? The NFL is set to go. Good luck, but not too much luck. I need some for my Giants.

        • Un Canadien errant says:

          37 isn’t a sweater number that springs to mind like 38 or 39 or 36 does, when it comes to the Habs, but for the Chargers… Rodney Harrison had a few great seasons where he and Junior Seau were the only thing worth watching wearing the bolts and blue.

          Speaking of the NFL, I did my fantasy football draft yesterday, and Eli Manning went undrafted. I was very surprised by that, I think he’ll have a bounce back year, their new offence is said to be similar to the one that the Chargers installed last season and revived Philip Rivers’ career.

          • Cal says:

            Eli is like that. 1 good to great year, then 1 sort of mediocre. If the D holds up and the offense bounces back, a wild card finish is all I can hope for.

  37. Rad says:

    Artturi Lehkonen sounds like a good kid, it will be interesting to watch him develop. At 5’11”, he will eventually play at about the same size as former Habs’ Finnish connection Saku Koivu.


    • Marc10 says:

      Yes. He got a lot of praise from his play in junior. It will be interesting to see how it translates to higher grades of play.

      His buddy who’s slotted to play in Chicago is supposed to be quite a special player. Maybe we get the sleeper Finn with our later round pick. Hope so.

  38. HardHabits says:

    Every year like clockwork HIO trots out the Red Fisher articles and we toast another year gone by. Good thing Jean Beliveau was born in late August.

  39. Peter Young says:

    Many happy returns of the day to Jean Beliveau along with gratitude for all he did for the Montreal Canadiens.

    Jean Beliveau’s first season in the NHL, 1953-54, was the first season I followed hockey. I was 10 years old, newly arrived from England, and for some wonderful reason, I immediately became a diehard fan of the Canadiens although we moved to Leafs territory in rural Ontario after landing in Montreal, although the Red Wings were in their dynasty years and although Gordie Howe was hockey’s fair-haired boy. The reason was Maurice Richard, but quickly I learned about all the other Canadiens, including the one on whom great hope for the future was pinned, Jean Beliveau.

    Jean didn’t live up to expectations that first year. He had scored five goals in a three-game stint with the Canadiens the season before, but, partly because he missed 26 games of the 70-game season through injury, he managed only 13 goals and and 21 assists for 34 points in 44 games, very good for a rookie, of course, but not up to the billing he had been given. Still, most fans knew it was only a matter of time before he would take off.

    The next season, of course, was Jean’s breakout year, as he finished third in the NHL scoring race two points behind Bernie Geoffrion and one behind the Rocket. And the following season, his third, he more than lived up to the highest expectations, winning the points scoring title and scoring 47 goals in the regular season and 12 in the playoffs, tying the Rocket’s record.

    I remember watching on the television that seventh game against the Hawks in Chicago in 1971. We knew it was probably Jean’s last game, and when the Hawks took a 2-0 lead, things looked pretty dim for a triumphant exit. Well, as you all know, the Canadiens came back, and Jean went out with the Stanley Cup in his arms.

    I was privileged to have followed Jean Beliveau’s entire career. One of the last times I saw him play live, on November 2, 1969, he scored four goals against the Kings in Los Angeles in the first two periods and was then given only very limited ice time in the third period, coach Claude Ruel claiming he was resting him for the playoffs, which were still months away. It’s hard to believe that it’s 43 years since Jean retired and 61 years since his rookie season began.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      My earliest Montréal Canadiens memory is of Jean Béliveau’s last Stanley Cup, in amazing colour television. I’d only seen black and white up until then. I then heard everyone saying that it would be his last Cup, that he wouldn’t play anymore, and I started to cry, because I thought they were saying he was going to die (I was five years old, I was easily confused). Everyone soothed me and explained the concept of retirement.

      The next season, I was further reassured when Frank Mahovlich was pointed out to me as the replacement for Jean Béliveau, and it made sense to me, he was a big tall dude who seemed wise and skated sort of the same. I had a soft spot for him from then on, and his kid brother Peter.

  40. Donkey Hoat says:

    Happy birthday, Mr Beliveau.

    And Merry Christmas to you, George Bailey…in jail!

  41. Ian Cobb says:

    I have a great story to tell you about Jean Beliveau’s family.

    At 7 years old until I left home while repeating grade 6 for the second time, I played football and hockey in St. Lambert. One of my very best friends that I also shared these sports with and we also raced homing pigeons together. He was Jean Beliveau’s cousin. His name is Bob Lemeiux. Bob was a big fella who gave me my fist concussion in football when I went low to tackle him, his knee made contact with my chin. I have just now found out that Bob went on to caption the Mtl. Junior Canadiens under the coaching of Scotty Bowman. Bob was a tough hockey player in the NHL and he also coached Adirondack the Detroit Red Wings farm team, unbeknown to me as we had never spoken since we were kids, and I was illiterate, we lost track of each other until two weeks ago. When both our work with concussion in hockey brought us together for the first time since I had left home some 55 years ago.
    Below is a letter that Bob sent to me about Jean Beliveau and Bobs grandfather. There is a monument of their grandfather outside the Bell Center today!



    Dear Eddie;

    On behalf of the Marcel Belliveau family I like to thank you for the mention of our patriarch in your November 18, 2009, column, “Habs have had Metro, N.B. connections.”

    It is not often these days that a great man from the past is remembered; but the Belliveau family, his daughter’s Evangeline and Judith, his grandsons, Bob and Bernard, and his granddaughters, Margot, Mimi, Marie and Rene, have never forgotten the impact he had on our lives. Although he was a superior, athlete and coach, he was our hero. His determination to overcome adversity, associated with the wounds suffered in WW I, his undying commitment to his family and extended family and his commitment to the helping young athletes in Dorchester succeed and his unwavering belief that young inmates at the penitentiary in Dorchester, with help and understanding could make something of their lives have gone unheralded.

    I am taking the liberty of adding to your collection of background information on mu grandfather in the hope that you and I can pursue his overdue induction into the Moncton and New Brunswick Sports Halls of Fame.

    You highlighted his pre and post WW I hockey career but let me add some additional facts that are not widely known; Marcel was so dedicated to his career, even after his sustained his wounds that he not only played locally he attempted a comeback in the pro’s in Barrie, Ontario, under an assumed name, Ferdinand Belliveau, (his father’s) because he feared losing his army pension if he demonstrated he was not a 100% disabled veteran. Both he and my grandmother have told me the stories of how, at the end of each game, his underwear and uniform were soaked in blood from the hemorrhage produced by the exertion required to play competitively. Ultimately he had to capitulate or die.

    However, he returned to Dorchester where Warden Goad recognized his value as a human being and invited him to join his staff at the penitentiary. During the twenties he coached and assisted the Dorchester High School hockey team win two, back to back Provincial Championships. Again his involvement was scrutinized by others in the community who were willing to divulge to the Federal Department of Veterans Affairs that he was receiving a pension but functioning as a normal citizen, unfortunately he lived under that umbrella of threat for years. Prior to his departure for the pro’s he led the St. Bernard’s team in Moncton to the Provincial Championship as well, (enclosed picture). He made his name as a forward, but began his career as a goaltender, because that is where Acadians ended up at an Irish school back then, but undaunted he scored six goals in the game as a goaltender and that ended his brief career in the nets.

    As a product of a wartime romance I was delivered to my grandparents in Dorchester and raised by my grandparents and consider Dorchester my maternal home and Marcel and Ruth my advocates during the critical development years. My grandfather, as you will see in the accompanying images, had sustained significant wounds which required attention daily. As an impressionable child I would sit in awe as my devoted grandmother, an English bride, dresses the holes in his back and chest in the middle of the kitchen, each afternoon before he left for the pen. Alcohol and iodine administered into the wounds as far as the forceps could burrow, and never a sound of pain or discomfort was heard. His cheerful attitude was overwhelming and disarming. Strength and courage were simply something that a man did…no request for pity or supplemental help; life was what it was and we accepted the challenges we were given and moved on.

    My inspiration to pursue a career in sports was attributable to him, but not as a result of his vicarious need to re-live his life through me but to have me recognize, at age twelve, that if I chose to be anything in life, there was nothing to stop me. I remember it well; he asked me if I wanted to play fast pitch softball while I was with him in the summer in Dorchester with the Cyclones. I said yes, believing it was kids like me. However, when I arrived at the field, I was shocked to find men, intimidating guys, and I was expect6ed to become an integral part of their team and league. When I expressed my apprehension about my capacity to perform there all he did was, join me on the players bench, put his arm around my shoulder and offered some simple advice, “Grand-sonny, you can do anything you want to do in life if you just believe in yourself!” Not bad for the oldest of thirteen children with a seventh grade education.

    In his own way he was a great humanitarian and philosopher who understood the human psyche and that was evident in his contribution to kids incarcerated at the pen. They loved him; he was a man’s man and for me he epitomized the Will Rogers personality…He never met a man he didn’t like!” I remember walking the streets of Moncton of our shopping days in the “big” city when I was a child and watching in amazement how everyone he met he greeted, stopped to talk too and whether in his Acadian French or English with his Acadian accent he had a story to tell and everyone laughed. He would have made a great politician. He knew how to press the flesh and make a bad a day good. His smile was infectious and no one had a bigger heart for the less fortunate.

    I can’t remember a day in Dorchester when a man leaving the penitentiary didn’t stop buy our house on Water Street come to the door to say good bye to Marcel or as they addressed him, :Mr. Belliveau.” They never asked but they always were fed a great meal, by my grandmother and then taken across the driveway to the Adirondack chairs on the lawn where he would sit t=the man down sit beside him, with me at his feet admiring the man, and listen to him asking the released felon to promise not to return and to begin his life over and to stay out of trouble. He always pointed out the qualities in the con and never diminished his talents or character. It was an education in understanding that I have never forgotten.

    His only vice was his attempt to avoid my grandmother’s scrutiny, when he

    He’d always slip the fellow a wad of cash and a simple message; “Don’t mention this to the old lady (my grandmother) and use it wisely to get back on your feet,” and this from a man who was not wealthy himself…others mattered more to him and the hope he had for them, than himself. I don’t know how many recidivists there were but I never saw the same faces in the yard a second time.

    Eddie, this is a special man, he was more than a grandfather to us he was special to many in the Moncton area. This past summer he was honored at the World Congress of Acadians, The Belliveau Clan, as one of their heroes. Another tribute the family is grateful for. Two or three years ago he was the City of St. John, when he was included in their exhibition of WW I and WW II heroes, it has since made its way, across Canada. As for the Canadiens, he was the first Acadian to play for the vaunted Canadiens, followed by our cousin and captain, Jean, (same family tree), and I was blessed to be a member of their organization from age thirteen to twenty-one when I was drafted by the Oakland Seals in the first NHL expansion draft. It was an interesting coincidence that I wore the same number 4 as my grandfather and the Jean also wore. At the time Jean was captain of the big club, I was honored to be named captain of the Junior Canadiens by Scotty Bowman. Maybe there are six degrees of separation between people.

    Iam honored to be Marcel Belliveau’s grandson and I hope that we can see that he is honored with induction into the Moncton and New Brunswick Sports Hall of Fame.

    Your help would be most appreciated.


    Bob Belliveau-Ferrin Lemieux

    PS–From Ian Cobb–Bob is putting together with pathologists a brain donation bank in Moncton of concussed players.

    News, Pictures and comments

  42. Mc says:

    Happy Birthday to the definition of class……all the best, Mr Beliveau.

  43. Ian Cobb says:

    Going lobster fishing with Jean Beliveau’s cousin next week in N.B. for a few days. Bob Lemieux. Bob played and was caption of the junior Canadiens coached by Scotty Bowman, before his career in the NHL.

    I will post the story that I posted last year about the Beliveau family in a few min.

  44. BriPro says:

    A man in a Florida supermarket tried to buy half a head of lettuce.

    The very young produce assistant told him that they sell only whole heads of lettuce.

    The man persisted and asked to see the manager.

    The boy said he’d ask his manager about it.

    Walking into the back room, the boy said to his manager: ‘Some a-hole wants to buy half a head of lettuce.’

    As he finished his sentence, he turned to find the man standing right behind him, so he added, ‘And this gentleman has kindly offered to buy the other half.’

    The manager approved the deal, and the man went on his way.

    Later the manager said to the boy, ‘I was impressed with the way you got yourself out of that situation earlier. We like people who think on their feet here. Where are you from, son?’

    ‘Canada, sir,’ the boy replied.

    ‘Well, why did you leave Canada?’ the manager asked.

    The boy said, ‘Sir, there’s nothing but hookers and hockey players up

    ‘Really?’ said the manager. ‘My wife is from Canada.’

    ‘No sh&t?’ replied the boy. ‘Who’d she play for?’

  45. BriPro says:

    Bonne fête, Gros Bill.
    Toi et Cournoyer, toujours mes préférés!

  46. Mavid ® says:

    I probably mentioned this before I met Jean Beliveau when I was 14 my parents took us to the airport. They had just defeated the Bruins in the first round..he looked like a giant. Women were putting their babies in is face and he was kissing them..that seemed to me like such a strange thing to do..

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

    • AliHaba says:

      Well Mary, I’ll have to take back my remarks from earlier. Someone at HIO is on the ball. Great to see Carol Vadnais acknowledged as well as Jean Beliveau’s birthday.

  47. AliHaba says:

    A comment on the passing of Carol Vadnais. I remember his brief time with the Habs (11 games in 1966-67 and 31 games in 1967-68). Seemed like he was the odd man out among himself, Serge Savard and Guy Lapointe who were all breaking in around the same time. Maybe a parallel to this year’s team with three young defensive prospects in the wings. Vadnais was a member of the ’68 Cup team and also won the Cup in 1972 with the Bruins. Certainly he was a true professional at a time when the sport was expanding rapidly.

  48. AliHaba says:

    One of my greatest Habs’ memory is of the 1971 play-offs when the underdog Canadiens beat out the Bruins. Big Jean took the bull by the horns and led the way. Looking back now I can’t see how they could have been underdogs with the following in their lineup:-Ken Dryden, Rogatien Vachon, Yvan Cournoyer, J.C. Tremblay, Frank and Peter Mahovlich, Jacques Lemaire, Marc Tardif, Henri Richard, Guy Lapointe, John Ferguson, Claude Larose, Rejean Houle, Jacques Laperriere, and Serge Savard!

  49. Maritime Ronn says:

    The 1965 Stanley Cup Final saw the Habs against the Chicago Blackhawks.

    The Series was tied 3-3 against a strong Chicago team with the likes of Bobby Hull-Stan Mikita-Phil Esposito-Kenny Wharam….. and a D with 3 time Norris Trophy winner Pierre Pilote, and a goaltender named Glen Hall.

    Game 7 in Montreal:
    Beliveau scores the 1st Habs goal leading the team towards a Game 7/4-0 Stanley Cup win for the Habs

    A young Danny Gallivan calls the play:

    Mr. Beliveau becomes the VERY 1st winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy awarded to:
    “…The player judged most valuable to his team during the National Hockey League’s Stanley Cup playoffs.”

    How things have changed.
    Game 7 of the Cup Final in 1965 was played on…May 1st.

    As for the Conn Smythe Trophy, the Habs ruled in the early years after the 1965 win by Mr. Beliveau:

    1969: Serge Savard
    1971: Ken Dryden
    1973: Yvan Cournoyer
    1975: Guy Lafleur
    1978: Larry Robinson
    1979: Bob Gainey

    In the past 35 years, only 1 Hab has won the Conn Smythe – and he did it Twice in both 1986/93..that being, of course, Patrick Roy.

    • AliHaba says:

      I joined the ranks of true Hab fans that year (1965). I was only 6 when they won their last of 5 in a row in 1960. I faintly remember them losing in the semi-finals in 1961 to eventual Cup winners Chicago. The 1965 Cup win cemented my love for the Habs and is still rock solid after almost 50 years.

    • BriPro says:

      Hi Ron. Long time….
      I just wanted to comment on your earlier observation of his PIM.
      I do remember him becoming a master with his elbows, à la Gordie Howe.
      The game had far more clutch and grab, hooking and slashing than is allowed now.
      And Beliveau always made sure that he’d keep them at bay when he played the slot. Great hockey, it was!

  50. frontenac1 says:

    Bonne Fete Gros Biil! I feel sorry for you youngsters that never got to see him play. Try to check out the old tapes of him. One of a kind, that has not yet been dupicated.

    • AliHaba says:

      The closest to duplicating Jean Beliveau is likely Mario Lemieux with Gilbert Perreault also in the discussion.

      • JohnBellyful says:

        I would add Jean Ratelle, another very talented centre who earned just 276 penalty minutes in 21 seasons and was “regarded as one of the classiest players” to ever play the game (Hockey Hall of Fame).

  51. Marc10 says:

    Bonne Fete Mr Beliveau!

    Many happy returns.

  52. AliHaba says:

    Happy Birthday Jean!

  53. scavanau says:

    Happy birthday Mr. Beliveau.

    My Quebec brothers and sisters, I need some help.

    I’m headed up tomorrow for a camping trip near Montebello. It looks as if your liquor stores shut down for the holiday. I can deal with that. But, the last 2 times I went north I was unable to locate Brador beer. A favorite of mine (and the wife) since we as teenagers discovered the wonders of beer in the early 80’s.

    What gives? No longer brewed? Will I have better luck as I venture beyond the duty free shop?

    I have a cabin at “Kenauk Nature”. Anyone familiar with it?

  54. habsfan0 says:

    Happy birthday Big Jean and many more to come!

  55. Geekay says:

    From the video (6:43): “If we would ‘ave any brain, we wouldn’t be ‘ockey player.”


    — GK

  56. Blade says:

    Happy Birthday, Monsieur Beliveau. Many, Many more!!

  57. scamorza says:

    happy birthday le gros bill – my all time favorite Hab and an incredibly wonderful man and great Canadian

    come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  58. Paz says:

    Le Gros Bill, one of a kind, larger than life.

    Happy Birthday!

  59. on2ndthought says:

    Happy Birthday to Gros Bill.

    Fischer is such a great storyteller, and had the team to tell stories of.

    “a cannonading drive”

    • ProHabs says:

      Red Fisher is a crook who was involved with Alan Eagleson to screw the players.

      • Blade says:

        Haven’t heard that one before…you care to elaborate that statement?

        • D Mex says:

          … yet another HI/O hit & run / disappearing act …

          ALWAYS Habs –
          D Mex

        • Marc10 says:

          That’s from the latest book on Eagleson. UCE had a nice review of it on this site. Red has some kind of business dealing with the former player agent/crook and ended up with a nice payment for his troubles… Didn’t come off looking too good from that sorry episode is my understanding (but I’ll have to read the book to confirm all this…)

          Anyhow, that’s probably where this shot at Red comes from.

  60. Mavid ® says:

    much nicer picture

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  61. JUST ME says:

    This is about how far i can go back in my hockey memories. Seeing number 500 flashing on the tv screen was at that era quite a technical prouesse !!! I do not mind coming back every year to repeat myself, Jean Beliveau is class and respect and everyone should look up to this gentlemen. Do not make some like him anymore.

    On the day when another former great passed away today at 68 Carol Vadnais. R.I.P.

  62. Maritime Ronn says:

    I can only remember Beliveau from the mid/late 1960s and on.
    “Gentleman” was a word frequently used to describe him, yet looking at his early stats, he must have been some kind of tough guy with the penalty minutes he racked up.

    1955-56: 70 Games – 143 Penalty minutes/47 Goals.
    1956-57: 69 Games – 105 Penalty minutes/37 Goals
    1957-58: 55 Games – 93 Penalty minutes/22 Goals

    Anyone posting here remember how he was during those years?

    • Cal says:

      After his 1st full season in the NHL, his teammates told him that the refs wouldn’t protect him and that he would have to earn his opponents’ respect. Thus, you see his penalty numbers rise while his offensive numbers rose, too. (The Habs first power forward?)

  63. dr. schmutzdeker says:

    Yo…I have to get out and play (# 1 twice in a row)…happy b’day JB.

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