Meet the Habs’ new management team

GMweb

This morning The Gazette published the first of what will be a weekly Hockey Inside/Out section in print, focusing on the Canadiens’ new management/coaching team.

Pat Hickey wrote features on new GM Marc Bergevin and assistant GM Rick Dudley; Dave Stubbs did a feature on new/old coach Michel Therrien, and Brenda Branswell, a new member of the sports department, wrote stories on new Hamilton Bulldogs coach Sylvain Lefebvre and director of player development Martin Lapointe.

Branswell has been at The Gazette since 2003 and spent the last six years on the education beat – but she knows her hockey. Like most Gazette readers, she grew up watching the Canadiens win six Stanley Cups in the 1970s and is looking forward to her new assignment writing about the team.

Next week we’re planning to focus on the new faces added to the Habs’ on-ice roster during the offseason.

Below are the web links to all the stories from today’s section:

Sports editor Stu Cowan introducing new weekly HIO section:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Dropping+puck+section/7233430/story.html

Hickey on the new GM Bergevin:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Habs+Bergevin+hockey+homecoming/7233427/story.html

Sidebar story on new GM:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Blackhawks+were+smart+draft+Bergevin/7233522/story.html

Story on new assistant GM Dudley:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Canadiens+assistant+Dudley+talent/7233524/story.html

Stubbs on the new/old coach Therrien:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Michel+Therrien+returns+Canadiens/7233136/story.html

Branswell on new Bulldogs coach Lefebvre:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Hamilton+Bulldogs+head+coach+Sylvain/7233403/story.html

Branswell on new director of player personnel Lapointe:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/montreal-canadiens/Habs+Martin+Lapointe+club+future/7233520/story.html

(Photo by John Kenney)

299 Comments

  1. naweed235 says:

    Ok guys I am going to go ahead an ask a dumb question:
    What is being affected exactly as far as player’s revenue, when there is talk of HRR being split 57 to 43? As far as I knew, players get contracts from teams and the team is obligated to pay them the full amount of their contract and I thought that is their only revenue. Is this HRR a separate source of revenue? Does it in any way connect to the escrow accounts we’ve been hearing talked about?
    I’d appreciate it if someone can clear this up for me

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      I think the % split affects the cap and also affects the actual fraction of their salary paid to them. For example a player may see his contracted salary reduced if league revenues fall.


      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  2. ont fan says:

    Keenan says of the 87 series…there would have been a penalty called every shift with todays rules. The players played thru all the interferring and holding to play the best hockey ever.

  3. shiram says:

    Katie Carrera Katie Carrera ‏@kcarrera

    #Caps announce they’ve signed John Carlson to a six-year contract extension worth $23.8 million.

  4. mark-ID says:

    This would be cool, have a new Summit series vs. Russia if there is a strike. At least we would have something other then the Bulldogs to look forward to.

    http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey/article/1256474–nhl-lockout-nhlpa-pitching-canada-russia-series

    “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

    • savethepuck says:

      Although it sounds interesting in principal, a lot of Russian players and some Canadian players will be playing in the KHL if there is a lockout. Others may be playing in European leagues. These schedules are already made so I highly doubt these teams will allow the lockout players they have under contract to take 2 or 3 weeks off to play in an exhibition to help the NHLPA. I also doubt the Russian players would be interested if they do not have Malkin, Ovie, etc… available to play.

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

  5. kempie says:

    It wouldn’t surprise me to see Subban sign today.

  6. habsnyc says:

    In October 2011, with the NBA lockout looming, Bill Guerin who was part of the NHLPA negotiating committee spoke about the player consequences of a lockout. “I learned a big lesson: It’s not a partnership. It’s their league, and you are going to play when they want,” he said. “For so long, I thought so long and hard about it,” he said. “But when you think about it, I tell guys it wasn’t worth it.”

    No veteran is going to make up what they lose in a lockout. If a one year lockout saves the players 10%, it takes a decade of earnings to make back the one year of losses. If they players do not fold, they are throwing away their money. I assume the NHLPA hired Fehr to prevent them from being locked out an entire season. Fehr, because there is such solidarity and because he is so well respected, can come to the table and accept a deal without looking weak. That should be his role, to save face for the players without costing them a year of salary.

    http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/10/19/3457577/bill-guerin-to-nba-players-its.html

    Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

    • Timo says:

      Guerin is right on one thing. Players are merely employees. They can unionize, make demands, imagine that they are running the show… In the end, it’s the 30 owners that own the league. If they have to fold it to start from scratch, they will. THese same players will come back. The same fans who are now saying they won’t be back, will be back. There is no cure.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      I said it yesterday, not to take sides, that the players, particularly the non-stars are being extremely stupid. I was excoriated but I can’t see how I’m wrong. Molson will go back to making beer, the stars may play elsewhere but the third and fourth liners and more fringe-like players will lose big time along with the fans.
      Will they still expect these guys to go into the corners or drop their gloves to protect them? I can’t see how they can follow Fehr and the Superstars along this path.

  7. habstrinifan says:

    I been locked out!!!!

  8. Marcusman says:

    Well I think I’m over it….going to buy an online AHL subscription and simply follow the Bull dogs… There should be some great hockey to be had!

    Will Brendon Gallagher score 40 in the next level up? Grab a PC and beer and find out!

  9. shiram says:

    Bergevin has won over alot of fans just by replacing Gauthier, of course he added alot of trainers/scouts/management and it’s all good things a team with deep pockets should have.
    But he he has not addressed much of the on ice needs. He solidified the bottom 6 with some grit and talent with Prust and Armstrong, but he failed to improve on the 4th line C, re-upping Nokelainen, now this is one move I still don’t get, as apart from being a first round pick and being on the positive side percentage wise of faceoffs, Nokelainen just does not bring much of anything to a team.
    Makes me miss Maxim Lapierre.
    He basically did nothing to improve the D, adding in Bouillon is questionnable as an upgrade considering the loss of Gill.
    Nothing was done to improve the top 6 either, heck re-signing Kostitsyn would still help the team.
    Therrien has divided the fans, I think he is an upgrade over Cunneyworth, maybe not over Martin, but Martin’s time was done even if he could get some results out of the team, his way of doing things just does not seem to work with today’s players.
    Everyone’s happy about the draft, but to me it seems that was mostly Timmins doing and Habs securing the picks they did was more a factor of where they ended the season, not of great management.
    I don’t think there’s anything to rejoice over yet, but neither should anyone panic, not one game has been played under the Bergevin/Therrien regime yet, Bergevin has not made any trades yet and Therrien could surprise us.
    It just seems to me that if there was a season to be played the Habs would probably not improve by much.

    • Habfan17 says:

      Give Bergevin a break. There was much to fix off the ice first. If that wasn’t done, then the players would not develop well and the on ice product would not improve either.

      With the pending CBA running out, not too many teams made any changes. They wanted to see what the new landscape would be. The Habs have some good young prospects, some key players coming back from injury and a whole new philosphy and business model.

      Give Bergevin and the new managment team some time.

      Habfan17

      • shiram says:

        I’m just judging him on what he has done so far, I’m not impressed. I do agree that it’s way too premature to call for his head, but with the lack of interesting things to discuss I felt it was fair game to voice my opinion on him and his work so far. I do hold hope for the future, but it does seem like it would be another tanking season, or close enough to tanking.

        • commandant says:

          This wasn’t a team that needed a one year fix.

          Sure we could do the one year thing and be a 7-10th place team and fight for the playoffs, lose in the first or second round and do it all again.

          Or we could go out, have a great draft, get some young assets, let some of the youth play, and look to build into an actual contender, and thats the route Bergevin is going. We see this in the massive number of hires in scouting and player development. The future has become priority.

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
          http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • shiram says:

            I was hoping for more gradual improvement but I have not seen it materialize yet. I agree the scouting and player Dev improvements are great moves that will pay dividends down the line, but i feel the team overall is weaker than they were at the start of last season, and that’s troubling to me.

          • commandant says:

            Are they weaker though? A full season of Markov and Gionta should lead to a stronger team than the one we saw most of last season. Markov especially.

            Go Habs Go!
            Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
            http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • shiram says:

            Injuries are a huge factor, and Gionta and Markov can certainly help, but we lost 2 top 6 wingers in Cammy and AK and we got only Bourque in return and as I said before, I doubt Bouillon is an upgrade over Gill.

        • Habfan17 says:

          I am not sure how you can say that there has been no improvement. The team hasn’t even hit the ice yet!

          I think your expectations are way to high and skewed. With the CBA ending and so many injuries, what did you expect Beregevin to do?
          If you were hoping to get an impact 2nd line left wing, then someone valuable would have to go the other way like Plekanec, Subban, or one the the top prospects. Bergevin did not have the cap space to take runs at Parise or Suter. There was no way he should have offered the money to Weber that Philly did.

          Bergevin is doing it right. He is getting to know the players, instilling a new team image and philosophy, and letting the players show what they can do when they don’t have the gong show going on with manaagement. he has brought in the development team to get the prospects ready and keep them from following in the footsteps of the Kostitsyn’s, hanging out with the wrong crowd.

          Like I said, give them a chance and let’s see what happens when there is a new CBA

          Habfan17

    • afik says:

      You are absolutely right! We’v been discussing these issues during the last few days. As far as I can remember, what really kills me is that nobody has really asked MB this question. Am i correct?
      I’d eally like to hear his point of view…

    • savethepuck says:

      I don’t think he could of done much more this summer re free agents. I agree we need a big shutdown clear the crease DMan, but we have too many D under contract now. If he went out and signed a guy like this in July, we’d have too many D. Contrary to popular belief on here, Diaz and Weber ( I’ll add Kaberle) are NHL DMen who unfortunately don’t fit on this team because of the present makeup of our D. These guys are assets though that can be used in a trade. It would not of been smart IMO to sign UFA DMen over the summer just to release these guys for nothing. I am sure also most agree on here that we have a promising D core coming up very soon. Why cripple the team with more long term contract free agent signings, term is usually required to sign these guys. I think the need for a legitimate top 6 winger will be also addressed via a trade or just evaluating what this team actually has.

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

      • Habfan17 says:

        Give guys lke Pateryn a chance, and Nash. They have some grit and size and may suprise you! Sometimes throwing too much money on one player hurts the team overall.

        Habfan17

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Hi Shiram,

      I agree with most of your comments above I think the CBA has had a lot to do with him slowing down after July. The Entire NHL did.

      Give him a proper season to give it a shot before we bash him This season sucks all around and I don’t like condensed seasons either and I think people should Boycott if they can.

      Whoever gets the cup this year should have an astrix beside it IMHO as they didn’t have to battle the 82 game sched then the playoffs. Makes a difference on your body for sure.

      MB will address the issues and Team toughness was a big one and i am sure when actually hockey becomes a possibility other issues will be addressed

      • shiram says:

        I hope I did not come out as bashing him, it was not my intent, but player wise he has done nothing to warrant praise either.
        Prust was his biggest move, and it’s fair to say he is either over-priced or got too long for term.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Nah it doesn’t come across as bashing. I agree with your evaluation but unfortunately there is other BS going on that screws up what he can do currently. This team has a lot of holes that need to be fixed and I think we will have to extend some patience and this season will be a write off on what he can do as it will only most likely be a partial season. I going to follow the bulldogs this year. I am not a fan of condensed schedules & Seasons. They will try and cram in a bunch of back to back games and injuries will be crazy and the hockey won’t be great

    • 24 Cups says:

      shiram – When evaluating Bergevin’s peformance I think you have to keep two things in mind: he has only been on the job for four months and he took over a cellar dwelling team. When you look at all the crappy NHL teams of the past, you quickly realize that it takes time to really make significant improvement (with the exception of the Philly turnaround).

      I hear you on Bouillon. I think that was a a bit of a trip down memory lane.

      AK46 has gone to Russia. Huselius is still injured after all this time. The UFA cupboard was bare and expensive. LW is going to be a major sink hole for the Habs this year.

      You are spot on when it comes to Laps. He might be a hotdog but he was a wasted asset in Montreal. Nokia is strictly a placeholder.

      I’m not a Scott Gomez fan and I truly believe he needs to be moved so that we have a clean new start from the Gainey era. Having said that, Andrew Berkshire brought up an interesting point. IF Gomez stays, and IF he accepts the role of being a 4th line player (at 7.3M a season), then Montreal might just have a decent 4th line. He has the potential to make that line tick and team up with Moen as a solid PK team.

      The Bouillon issue doesn’t get solved until Tinordi is ready (around two years from now?). I’m dead set against having Galchenyuk or Eller play LW so that dilemma is going to take a few years to solve. Until then, the problems you have mentioned are going to be reflective of a team that is a bottom feeder.

      There’s no magic here. The third, five year plan during the past ten years is now a harsh reality.

      • shiram says:

        Of course for a GM, you have to give them the time to get a clear picture on how they operate and how well they do, but I think it’s fair to look at what has been done so far and analyze it.
        AK46, if the rumours are true, only signed recently and could have been had on the cheap, probably one year deal, I still think he could help the Habs.
        Nokelainen is a big question mark, why is he back? I don’t get it at all.
        I guess Gomez could do good as a 4th line C, but I don’t feel like he has the motivation to play that kind of role, and if he’s to be slotted there, why re-up Nokelainen? Weird.
        I also think Eller should not be played on wings, but that seems to be the case if the lineups Stubbs posted yesterday are to be believed, that said Bourque might be healthy when the season resumes, so hopefully that’s not an issue.
        As for Galchenyuk, I would not be opposed to having him on the wings for one season, but that’s still some time away.

        • commandant says:

          Nokelainen is back because he’s a cheap 13th forward who accepts his role, can win faceoffs and kill penalties if he comes into the lineup.

          He’s a role player who makes barely above NHL minimum. There is nothing to “get” here other than its cap management and spending cheap on a veteran press box guy rather than sticking a kid in the press box with limited ice time.

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
          http://lastwordonsports.com/

        • Habfan17 says:

          Please give up on AK46, he is not a team player, he is not consistent and he is not the type of player Bergevin wants. He added players that are team players all the way and leave it all on the ice. AK46 never did that.

          Nokelainen may be back because after training camp each team needs to submit a list of unprotected players. I would prefer to have Gomez and Nokelainen on that list over Eller or even Geoffrion at this point.

          Habfan17

    • AliHaba says:

      Gomez is there to fill that 4th line centre position. An injury-free Markov upgrades the D. Problems solved.

  10. The Dude says:

    Any more info on the player swap with Philly for Subban? :)

    • Habfan17 says:

      I haven’t heard anything, but since it is Philly asking about Subban’s availability and they seem desperate to add defence, I would go crazy and ask for Couturier, who is a lefty and might just fill the 2nd line left wing spot and 3rd round pick next season. If Philly balks then ask ofr Voracek and Noebels. I would rather they just keep Subban and hope he has matured this summer and that Brisbois can help him learn how to channel his enthusiasm

      Habfan17

  11. Marc10 says:

    With regards to PK, I heard it was the Flyers that approached the Habs.

    For PK, easily our best D man with years left to play, I’d want a first line forward with 30 goal potential and lots of miles left on the odometer.

    Given that the Flyers would never give us Giroux, I’d ask for the Schenn Brothers or Couturier + Simmonds. And that’s if I even want to entertain the idea…

    In other words… Ain’t never gonna happen.

  12. JF says:

    Andrei Kostitsyn has signed a one year contract with the Chelyabinsk Traktar in the KHL.

  13. SmartDog says:

    Stop with the PK trade rumors please. It’s ridiculous.

    What pisses me off about all this is that good negotiators get a deal DONE. They find ways to let the other guy feel like he’s won, things to give up in a horse trade, and they move forward. Both of these numnuts are working harder at keeping their own ranks together than at doing the job they say they’re doing. They are acting like municipal politicians – not leaders.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • ed lopaz says:

      the only way this cycle of stupidity ends is when the fans draw a line in the sand and yell “WE WON’T TAKE IT ANY MORE!”

      each fan, 1 at a time, has to come to that conclusion and then take ACTION.

      if there is a lockout and games are lost, I have decided to take ACTION.

      I am only 1 fan.

      But I will do my part to send my message loud and clear.

      • Habsrule1 says:

        That’s a nice sentiment, Ed, but it ain’t gonna happen.
        I remember hearing all about boycotts when gas was getting close to $1.00/litre. We’re going to stop going to this gas station or that gas station, etc, etc.
        Gas is now almost $1.40 in Ottawa, and likely about $1.50 in Montreal. What are we doing about it? The same as the majority of hockey fans will do about another lockout.
        SFA

        Go Habs Go!!

        “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

  14. Marc10 says:

    I haven’t verified this, but Rob Fournier on 98.5 mentioned that in 1982… The entire Flyer roster made… wait for it… $2mil. That’s the entire team.

    Mark Howe was the highest paid Philly player at the time making a bit over $200k a season.

    Vinny Lecavalier would make that in a couple of weeks (if there was no lockout of course…)

    Times have changed. Sure puts things in perspective.

  15. HabFanSince72 says:

    Pledge of the day.

    Please complete the sentence below.

    In the event of a lock-out I will use the unexpected free time to better myself by …

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    Yesterday watching the players get lined up for press conference I saw PK walk within 20 feet of Scott Hartnell, obviously PK is getting traded to Philly. :)

    • 123456 says:

      Two things:

      1) Maybe Hartnell on his way to Montreal

      2) Can you change your avator? I’m a Bills fan and … well… it hurts my feelings that your favorite is better than mine.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Living as close to Buffalo as I do, I empathize for BIlls fans. That team that went to 4 straight SuperBowls was incredible, to watch that franchise now get run into the ground by an NFL owner equivalent to Harold Ballard is dissappointing to see.

        Hard to even speculate what the future of that franchise is, given Wilson eventually pass away, who knows what he has written in his will to do with that franchise.

        As for PK/Hartnell, I am just throwing nonsense out, given how many others are actually believing some of these crazy ass rumours.

        Cheers, 123456, Have a good day.

  17. Ian Cobb says:

    I have to find a new life in the OHL or a couple more girl friends.
    This fight for world dominance for the mighty dollar is going to be dirty, messy and long, damn it! I said before, all of this year just to start talking and into next year before anyone gets serious.
    Sure hope HIO survives!

  18. Filthy Phil says:

    Habs wouldn’t win the cup this year anyway. Here’s to some more rebuilding time without media pressure! perhaps a lockout is a blessing in disguise for the habs!

  19. HabinBurlington says:

    What I hope will be one of my last CBA rants. I had the misfortune driving after work quite a while yesterday and heard Fehr on both TSN and the Fan sports radio shows.

    While he presents a wonderful “aw shucks” case in how the players are pretty much on par with Mother Thersea in terms of their incredible generosity, I lose all respect for his arguments when he makes his continuous comparisons to Baseball for all things perfect.

    Baseball has “Enormous” TV money coming in both League Wide and to the individual teams. This revenue stream alone covers off virtually all the revenue sharing without impacting each teams own gate revenue.

    Another comparison completely out of whack is the pay structure for baseball players compared to hockey. There is virtually no way a baseball player after signing his first contract can receive $6Million per year 3 years after that first contract. Granted the baseball contracts do get ridiculous, but the teams do have control of these players at a more fiscally restrained level for more than 3 years.

    The contracts which players like Seguin, Hall etc. are receiving after 3 years is unbelievable. The Owners obviously take some of the blame, but every teams fans clamour for their team to keep their young stars and therefore the contracts for these players has skyrocketed out of control before the players have truly established themselves as the cornerstones of success.

    I am on neither side in this CBA discussion, but Fehr makes out like the players are getting completely screwed from the last CBA when in reality their pockets have been filled since that initial rollback.

    Oh I am getting a headache now, and in fairness I could never even listen to one interview with Bettman never mind two, so perhaps that is why I have spent less time ranting about his continous puppet show. When he does talk, I do find his head takes on a Bobblehead type motion though. So he does have something going for him.

    • ed lopaz says:

      I agree.

      Comparing baseball to the NHL is really apples to oranges – but Fehr knows baseball so this is his comfort zone.

      Life is short.

      If the NHL and NHLPA can’t get a deal done I don’t lose 1 penny – and for that I am truly thankful.

      Also, you can bet that I won’t spend any of my own money on this league for years to come.

      “A plague on both your houses”

      • 123456 says:

        ed, if a deal is not done you gain money….. for those that attend NHL games you save a lot of money…. for those that watch a lot of game you will have more time to work, spend time with the family, or whatever….. in a way this is a positive for people. there are other sports to follow!!

  20. Cal says:

    Good morning and welcome to NHL Rockin’ Lockout Eve.
    Today’s event includes:
    a. A hand wringing contest (fans only)
    b. The blame game (fans, NHL and NHLPA)
    c. The “Why can’t we all just get along” singers.
    d. Butthead sings to Beavis, “He ain’t heavy; he’s my brother”
    e. Beavis sings the Twisted Sister classic, “We’re not going to take it”
    f. Near the end of the song, fans rush the stage, dragging Butthead with them. An impromptu gallows is built and both Beavis and Butthead hang.
    g. Coffee and doughnuts

    • BrianSkrudland says:

      Don’t forget ‘h':

      h. Sing a rousing rendition of (Alex) Auld (Robert) Lang (Joey) Sides

      Why couldn’t the league have a player with the last name ‘Syne’, to help make my joke work properly?! The players should negotiate the signing of a ‘Syne’ in the new CBA. Perhaps this is the big stumbling block that is leading to a lockout!

  21. HabinBurlington says:

    I think I am completely CBA’d out. Looking forward to the Dogs season to start now while I continue to watch the NFL.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Good morning Burly. I believe I’m at the “pissed” stage. Won’t issue any threats of NEVER AGAIN as I readily admit my addiction to the NHL.

      ———————————–

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Morning Jim, yah, no threats here either, once they play I will watch I don’t deny. But aside from a few tix a year they pretty much only get cable money out of me.

    • Habsman1970 says:

      Yeah, I am with you guys as well. I am over this tug-of-war between the league and PA, so as stated the other day, “screw’em’. As I live in the south US I do not get a lot of games here (unless I have Center Ice), but due to the 99.9% chance there is a strike happening this year the website HockeyStreams.com says they are going to carry AHL games and possibly some KHL games. I am pushing them for college hockey as well, but that may not fly.

      So, if there are any fellow hockey buffs itching for some games and are fed up with the NHL, I would suggest checking the site out as it will at least give us SOMETHING to cheer about.

      ONCE A HAB, FOREVER A HAB!!!

  22. Un Canadien errant says:

    My first real job growing up was working on tobacco farms. It was strenuous, dirty work, but I was a kid and didn’t know any better. I was probably working harder at home on chores, so it was almost like a vacation when I was at work. Plus I got paid what was fat cash for a teenager in the mid-seventies.

    Harvest time could go a number of ways based on your crew. You were all seated on the same harvester that crawled up and down the field, you were responsible for picking tobacco leaves on the plants in your row. If you had coworkers who’d done a few seasons, you could go at a pretty good clip, maybe even second or third gear with a mid-throttle. Some seasons though some newbie would join and be overwhelmed and we’d need to putter along in first gear on idle to accommodate him. Either way, you got paid a day rate, you were done your day when you’d filled a kiln.

    So we were happy summers when we had a fast team and could knock off around 1400 hr or so, we’d sometimes skip lunch and finish even earlier. The crew back at the farm who hung the leaves in the kiln were happy with short days too. When we dragged up and down at a snail’s pace and barely got home for dinner, nobody was. And on those slow days, we’d start yapping and moaning, since that’s all we could do to pass the time, pick tobacco at a mind-numbingly slow pace and talk with each other, while the newbie had a stress aneurysm trying to keep up.

    One day we were talking about wages. We spoke covetously of some farms that seemed like Shangri-La, with spic and span barns and kilns and kickass gleaming equipment, where they apparently paid as much as $35 or $38 a day. We were only making $26, a raise over the $24 we’d received the previous season. One wag piped up that Monsieur Laporte, our employer, used to pay his guys $32, but dropped the rate the year we joined or the one before. We understood that we got paid lower rates, his farm was smaller, and so were his kilns, so that our harvester was a six seater instead of an eight-seater at those bigger operations, and for him a day’s harvest wasn’t as lucrative as at those big places. But still, we thought…

    Well, Monsieur Laporte got wind of this, and midway through the next day, he drives to the field we were at in his truck and hops out, with a stack of ledgers under his arm. He calls us over and opens his meticulous books to us, who are at this point embarrassed and crestfallen that this nice man feels he has to explain himself to us young punks. But he insists and he lays it all out on the table, he shows us the entries for wages for this season and the years we worked for him before, and the years before we joined, and he put to rest the rumours we’d floated. It’s all there in the clearly marked ledgers, one for each season, and he points out the figures with his beaten thumb.

    We felt yea big. Monsieur Laporte wasn’t mad at us, he seemed just as embarrassed as we did, but he felt it necessary to clear the air, and for us to understand that he was paying us fairly, according to what he brought in, what he could afford, and what he always paid for his pickers. When he left and we got back to work, we talked about how he was a good guy and always treated us fairly, how he always threw a big party at the end of the season, how when the first frost approached and we slept at his farm’s bunkhouse he’d wake us up every two hours or so and we’d run out to the field and change the irrigation sprinklers from one field to another in the hopes that the warm water would prevent the tobacco from freezing, and he was so appreciative of us for our work. On the really cold and rainy days when you’re getting slapped in the face with wet tobacco leaves and you’re soaking wet no matter how good your rain gear is, he’d show up with his bottle of rum and pour us all a shot, and laugh along with everybody as each downed his shot and grimaced. “That’ll warm up your fingers,” he’d intone.

    I thought of Monsieur Laporte while I watched Sneerin’ Gary Bettman condescend to the reporters in his Thursday press conference. He let out some whoppers. One that made me sit up and laugh and rewind my PVR to ensure I’d heard him correctly, was when he said that in 2005 they come to an agreement that was fair to both parties, but in hindsight it had been “too fair.” Exclamation point!

    Another good one was when he kept saying that costs were rising, his only justification for wanting to claw back 10% of the players’ take. He mentioned that things such as jet fuel had increased, a necessary item for the charter planes the teams use. He explained that expenses for the benefit of the players, such as bigger medical teams, training staff, and coaching staffs had also risen.

    Now, these last costs seem to me costs that a winning organization would bear to be competitive, since owners usually want to win Stanley Cups and championships, and it has never historically been the role of the players to bear these costs. In any event, this is where Gary Bettman is the anti-Monsieur Laporte. If he had, as he told us he would after the last lost season, treated the players as partners he would work with to grow the game for everyone’s benefit, he’d now be able to take out his ledger and show the players like Monsieur Laporte did with us. “Look boys, we agreed on 45-55 last time around, with you guys getting 56 and 57% if revenues grew, but lookie here, our expenses have risen at double the rate of revenues. Jet fuel is such and such, equipment costs are 300% higher, most teams have doubled their training staff to help prevent injuries and recover quicker, we’ve had to add doctors to deal with the concussion problem and make your workplace safer, ….” If he valued the players, and if they trusted him, they could enter a discussion where there’d be a collaborative tone, not an adversarial one.

    Instead, he flatly states that they’re paying the players too much, apparently based on a value judgment, on the owners’ druthers. He refers to the recent NFL and NBA settlements as examples to justify that 57% for the players is too high, but this was something he was deadset against in 2005, brusquely stating that hockey was its own sport and had its own conditions that didn’t lend itself to comparisons.

    At the end of the year parties, Monsieur Laporte would give you your last paycheque, one that usually had a small bonus if the harvest looked promising, and he’d ask you what your plans were. We were all going back to school, most of us had already missed a week or so of classes to help bring in the harvest. He assured you that you had a job guaranteed the next summer if you wanted one, but that he’d understand if you got another job somewhere and needed to save up more money for university. He clearly seemed interested in our future and our success, and as a result so were we, we worked hard for him, not just as we normally would at any job, but because he was a nice man and we wanted nothing but the best for him.

    If Gary Bettman wasn’t the twerp that he is, the little guy with the Napoleon complex who has to browbeat everyone and show that he’s the smartest guy in the room, he could have counseled the owners differently and have approached these negotiations with a different tack. There would have been a chance that some common ground could have been found. Instead, the players see a sneaky little liar who is trying to worm his hands into their pockets, and the reporters who cover the game see it as much the same. It’s no surprise that this will be the third lockout on his watch. It’s indicative of who he is, and his leadership and management style. It also reflects very clearly what he values most: money over hockey.

    ———————————————————————–
    This isn’t “Billionaires vs. Millionaires.” Only a willfully uninformed fool would apply that sloppy shorthand designation to this disgraceful power grab crafted by some of the wealthiest individuals and corporate entities in North America aimed against professional athletes.–Larry Brooks of the New York Post

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

    • Chrisadiens says:

      Wow. ….Just wow. Great post UCE.

      Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

      • 123456 says:

        that was a nice write and read. i was left waiting for a punch line – like was Darche the newbie that slowed everyone up? but it was a serious piece so it’ sunderstood why the punchline was left out.

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Bravo!
      Quite impressive, UCE, to see how you’ve drawn upon personal experience to make a telling comparison between two management styles, in support of a truth most of us share about the NHL’s attack dog.

    • petefleet says:

      Great post. I also worked a seasonal job for a small time farmer when I was a kid and my story would be much the same as yours. Good people working hard for you and themselves. We were made to feel like we part of the organization, not a necessary evil.
      The problem with Bettman is he is a rich little snob who sees everyone, including the players (and probably the owners) as being beneath him. He exudes arrogance and you can smell it through the TV. If by some miracle he falls off the face of the earth tomorrow, the earth as a whole will be better off and so will the NHL, NHLPA and the fans.

      ******************************************

      “It just goes to show how difficult predictions are, especially ones made about the future.”

      RGM
      ***Habs Forever***

    • Chris says:

      Excellent post!

    • Cal says:

      Nicely spun tale. Tell me, did Mr. Laporte give you guys 57% of his tobacco revenues? ;)

    • habsnyc says:

      Nice story.

      But the last thing the players want is to be day laborers. They get guaranteed multi year contracts. That creates complications.

      Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

    • Bripro says:

      Wow, even 12 hours later, great read. Thanks Norm.

  23. HabFab says:

    For the Hockey Fantasy enthusiast, the Hab Prospects; now ain’t that an ironic title covering all of us now.
    http://www.habsworld.net/article.php?id=2899&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

  24. habs_54321 says:

    where is all this subban for pronger talk coming from the article people are refering to mentions nothing about pronger other than the fact he wont be playing this year making subban an attractive potentiol replacement,

    “The Philadelphia Flyers have reportedly asked the Montreal Canadiens about the availability of restricted free agent defenceman P.K. Subban.

    The Flyers are interested in adding Subban, who has been unable to come to terms on a new contract with the Canadiens. Philly will probably start the season with three blueliners — Chris Pronger, Andrej Meszaros and Andreas Lilja — out with injuries.

    Sportsnet reported earlier this week that he was close to signing a three-year, $12 million deal but so far that hasn’t happened. Last month, TSN said Subban had rejected a two-year, $5.5 million offer.

    If the Canadiens investigate a deal with the Flyers, they will likely ask for young forward Sean Couturier to be included, which will be a non-starter for Philly.”

    link:
    http://www.winnipegsun.com/2012/09/12/canadiens-flyers-talking-pk-subban-trade

    • habsnyc says:

      The talk is coming from an RDS story from earlier this week that ahoo and espn translated to English and stuck on their blogs.

      Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

  25. Bripro says:

    Last thought before snooze time.

    I wonder if Doan’s contract will be valid, since all are supposed to be approved by 5 o’clock saturday.

  26. JohnBellyful says:

    I could be wrong but that document on Bergevin’s desk, the one with the Canadiens logo, if you blow up the image and turn your head upside down, like I did, so you can read what’s printed, I’m pretty sure it’s a trade offer, PK for Pronger.
    I don’t pay much attention to all the flimsy rumours out there about who’s going where but it’s pretty hard to ignore solid evidence like this that leaps out at you.
    And the pad on the right with the writing? Line combinations.

  27. HabinBurlington says:

    Haha watching the goal by Lemieux to win Canada CUp there is a replay they showed where at center ice Hawerchuk uses his stick to interfere with a Russian player freeing up space for Lemieux. Ducky sure played good for that Canada Cup team.

  28. L Elle says:

    Upset about the CBA? Not me, I’m feelin’ good, sorta ;)

  29. Habilis says:

    You know what the real problem is with this whole circus? It’s the fact that the players are once again trying to prove how tough they are. Remember back in ’04 when Bryan McCabe famously said that he would sit out the rest of his career before playing under a cap? How did that work out for you Bryan?

    It’s the same thing now. The players have absolutely zero negotiating power but they simply refuse to admit it because they don’t want to feel “bullied”. I guess that’s more important than anything else to them.

  30. Bripro says:

    Here’s a one-on-one chat with Fehr.
    Watch for Moen and Gill walking the halls together.

    And a pretty discouraging rebuttal by Bill Daly.

  31. Phil C says:

    When the NFL was locked out, the players dissolved their union in an attempt to get the lockout declared illegal, but they reached an agreement before the courts made a final ruling. Does anyone know if this strategy would have worked and if the NHLPA would consider it? Without a union and CBA, a lockout would be a form of collusion, so the owners would be forced to open their doors based on a free market for salaries. Returning to a pure free market would make the 57% seem like a bargain.

  32. Ozmodiar says:

    I wonder how long it took for Bettman to negotiate his salary with the NHL. hmmm…

    I also wonder if, while negotiating, he had his family members stand behind him for support.

  33. HabFab says:

    hefteronthehabs – #NHL PA informs me: there will be no #Habs players at Que. Labour Relations Board hearing in MTL tomorrow morning.

    hefteronthehabs – #NHL PA will be represented by PA lawyer Michael Cohen, and Alex Dagg, PA’s Director of Operations at tomorrow’s LRB hearing.

    Dave_Stubbs @hefteronthehabs – Vet player told me no #Habs at Fri labour board hearing b/c it’s their final pre-lockout workout w/ team strength coach

  34. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I’m on the players’ side for existing contracts be respected, a restructured revenue partnership to help small market tesms, and maintain a 50+% of all revenues …but I am on the owners side to lengthen eligibilities for RFA and Free Agency

  35. JohnBellyful says:

    Maybe we’d all feel better if we could be certain, once a deal was struck, the two sides issued the following joint statement:

    The National Hockey League and NHL Players’ Association offer their profound apologies to hockey fans around the world for having deprived them of the game they love best as played by the best players the sport has to offer.
    We let our separate interests – which you would be right in calling greed – get the better of our judgment, forgetting it’s your interests that should be our paramount concern.
    We must never forget that it’s the people who attend games, who watch them on TV and the Internet, who listen to them on radio, and who buy the souvenirs who make it possible for we owners and players to enjoy lives most people would envy.
    We are beholden to you, but instead we held you hostage to our selfishness.
    The five-year deal we have just concluded will mean nothing if we haven’t learned from our mistakes, which victimized you and cost us dearly.
    As of tomorrow we will begin the process of forming a committee to review the state of hockey and what can be done to make the sport better and to protect it from ourselves. Ken Dryden has agreed to serve as chairman.
    He will be calling upon former players and general managers, as well as leaders of industry outside hockey noted for their business acumen and enlightened relations with labour, to join him as members on a commission.
    Its mandate will be to look at all aspects of hockey, with player safety being a primary concern, followed closely by a desire to produce an entertaining brand of hockey on a more consistent basis, unencumbered by unruly play. Underscoring these guiding principles will be an acknowledgment that they can be upheld only so long as the league’s economic health is sustained.
    The commission will not shy away from difficult issues, including the possibility of league contraction.
    Fans will be encouraged to participate in the process. Their voices will be heard.
    The commission is to report in two years, after which the league and players’ association will begin working in earnest on implementing the group’s recommendations.
    Concurrent with that initiative is a commitment is to set a framework for future negotiations to be conducted in an orderly manner and according to a schedule set well in advance of the contract’s expiry date.
    Failure to reach an agreement by the deadline will result in a financial penalty to both parties, the means and scope to be determined, for the purpose of ensuring a sincere application of effort.
    Ultimately, a lockout produces more losers than winners, a strike more victims than victors. Our pledge is to see that neither stoppage ever happens again.

  36. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …gotta agree with 241/2Cups on that …BOTH Fehr and Bettman are brilliant at what they do
    …it’s the avarice of many of the owners that have and will shoot themselves in their feet

  37. 24 Cups says:

    A significant aspect of the CBA war continues to be the dilemma of the inflated 2nd contract for entry level players.

    http://sports.yahoo.com/news/gms-smart-sign-players-under-175000888–nhl.html

  38. 24 Cups says:

    “Both parties may give something tomorrow morning but the key point is they continue to negotiate off their own proposals, not what they received from the other side.”

    Bob McKenzie

  39. accp says:

    How can people say a millionaire or a Billionaire is gonna hurt because of a lockout. Not happening. it was decided from the first meeting. if either were gonna hurt. they would have resolved this. if it goes on for 5-years they’ll still be in great shape. a ordinary person can live off 40,000 – 60,000 a year how can people say these guys really care. not-ta. their life will move along just fine. the only difference. no NHL hockey …

  40. frontenac1 says:

    Ah yes, no hockey. Will we return? As a dog returns to his vomit, a fool will return to his Folly. Yes Amigos, we are all doomed like hopeless junkies.

  41. HardHabits says:

    Highest rated comment courtesy of smiller8 which represents my attitude completely.

    To all NHL fans who have spent hundreds of dollars on tickets to watch a single game, or to those who have spent many thousands on season tickets, or those who have purchased NHL jerseys, T-shirts, and other merchandise to support their teams. How do you feel now, when millionaires and billionaires squabble over how to divide more than $3.3 billion of your money?

    Have you noticed that that nobody is talking about making the game better for you, or making it more accessible for you, or doing something to support you? Nope. It’s only about them.

    Something to think about the next time you contemplate buying tickets to see a game, renewing those season tickets, or even buying some NHL merchandise.

    source: http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/story/2012/09/13/sp-hockey-nhl-nhlpa-labour-negotiations.html

    • Ozmodiar says:

      This sentiment surprises me a bit.

      When people buy the tickets, the jerseys, the merchandise, don’t they know where the money is going? To millionaires and billionaires.

      Are people surprised that a union and a group of business owners would bargain over how to divvy up $3.3B?? That’s a lot of money. Do people expect them to be charitable towards the group on the other side of the bargaining table?

      When it’s all said and down, the consumers will be waiting with open arms. Both groups know this because it just happened a few years ago.

  42. HabFab says:

    RenLavoieRDS – Geoff Molson will talk to the media at the team golf tournament on the 19. He didn’t talk today.

    Not sure how many players will be there, could be interesting!

    • Ron says:

      That makes too much sense to float. Good article. Elliott must have some ammo to have written that piece. Maybe he has talked candidly with some players or members of the owners group. He sure can see butthead for what he is and what a poor image he must put forth to the NHLPA.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Blaming this whole thing on Bettman is way too easy. In fact, I feel sorry for him. He did a great job winning the last CBA war and now has to do it all over again due to the folly of some team owners and their henchmen.

      Bettman earns every dollar he makes.

      • Ron says:

        Do u thnk it possible that there is a core or clique of owners led by Jacobs that have a bit more clout and influence on the rest and in some way out voting the others in a group. As the chair of the owners group he gave buttman a big raise and extension. He worked for it but I feel he acts like a dictator who has a powerfull army behind him. With the gag order in place we won’t be hearing any disgruntle owners coming forth.

        • HabFab says:

          Not sure if there is weakness there;
          – those that lose money want to stop.
          – those that make money are not interested in giving it to those teams that lose money as per NHLPA plan.

          • Ron says:

            I had spent most of my working life in a law enforcement environment where although I was in a union we were not allowed to go on strike even though a strike vote would have been taken. Either you were declared as an escential employee and could not walk or the Feds would order you back. In this case for me to watch and listen to 750 members going against 30 owners and their investors with billions aplenty at stake I find it hard to take since they left it till this summer to start the process. Going be a long winter for me.

          • punkster says:

            Ron, approach it the way I approached my (numerous) marriages…emotional detachment.

            Of course that may be why I…oh, never mind…(stumbles aimlessly across empty dining room and collapses on beer case couch)

            ***Subbang Baby!!!***

        • Ron says:

          Punkster, although the thoughts of a beer case couch has my attention, my wife would not like that idea haha. I do have the local Q team to watch but I love our Habs. Been watching them faithfully for 59 years and hate these work stoppages.

  43. JohnBellyful says:

    I finally got around to reading the fine print on the ticket for the Oct. 27 game that was to be the main attraction of our Summit. Just to see if there were any loopholes we fans could exploit to force the league’s hand.
    Man, were we suckers!
    No, make that suckers!!!
    Here’s what fine print says (to make it easier for you, I’ve multiplied the text 100X):

    “No exchange and no refund in the event of a lockout brought on by pigheaded refusal of the players’ association to reduce its members’ share of hockey-related revenue to a fair and equitable portion that makes economic sense, and ensures the continued survival of franchises that currently provide employment for hundreds of players but which are sinking steadily ever deeper into debt.
    Upon cancellation of an event for which no other date has been selected in the next 100 years, this ticket may be refunded pursuant to the conditions set forth by the promoter of the event and L’ARENA DES CANADIENS INC., said conditions including the immediate removal, preferably violent, of the NHLPA executive director, and the payment of compensatory, speculative, and punitive damages by the association, hereafter referred to as ‘scum’.
    This ticket is void following a sworn complaint of theft of a season, in part or in whole, made at a local police station by any owner of nominally good standing in the National Hockey League against the perpetrators of the major felony (see ‘scum’).
    The holder of this ticket implicitly assumes any and all liabilities as they relate to the loss of revenue, in concession and souvenir sales, incurred as a result of the game’s cancellation for reasons stated earlier and to which the purchasers of tickets, by their non-attendance at the event, have made themselves accessories to a civil offence.
    It is recommended the holder seek a legal remedy by transferring the liability to the party with the deeper pockets (see ‘scum’), by force if necessary.”

    And guess what? At the very end of all the verbiage – yeah, there was more, lots more – it stated: “Failure to read the fine print is punishable by a fine.” And you had to answer a skill-testing question online within 24 hours of obtaining the ticket to avoid the penalty.
    I now owe L’ARENA DES CANADIENS INC $150.
    You know, if this keeps up, it could turn a feller off hockey.

    • Bripro says:

      Golly Gee Wilikers Batman, now that weez enlightened, feeling victimized and gots thar overalls of ars in a bunch, let us wander yonder to that lil’ ol’ flatlander, “Butthead”‘s badger den and forcibly pull out that tongue that does speak the bad English.
      It’s so sad to see the nanother way of life these here hockey stars go the way of so many things and weez still payin’.

  44. adamkennelly says:

    real solution to this mess is CONTRACTION..too many teams – get rid of 2 or 3 of the money bleeding ones..move the other money losing ones to better markets (i.e. quebec city)..improve the strength of the league, the quality of the product – all teams get better theoretically and move forward…problem is that costs the player’s jobs.. so as much as I side with the players – they are against the real solution.

  45. HabFab says:

    So if I understand all this PR mumbo jumbo correctly, no NHL for another season. I guess it will be the Bulldogs for moi …. who let the Dogs out!!

  46. BrianSkrudland says:

    Even though his smug demeanor irks me to no end, I do admire the way Bettman thinks on his feet. The guy has an impressive recall of statistics, dates, discussions, etc. while in front of media microphones.

    I still want to punch him in the face whenever I see that condescending look cross his mug though.

    How does such a short guy manage to look down his nose at taller people despite the height disparity?

  47. ooder says:

    if i am an owner..or have investments in the nhl i would love to have Bettman as my negotiator or representative.
    this lockout is everyones fault for not starting sooner.

    ——————
    The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

  48. HardHabits says:

    Coming back here to read comments is like watching toddlers in a wading pool after one’s been swimming with dolphins.

  49. Bripro says:

    Did anyone know that in NHL13 in GM mode, Scott Gomez starts in Hamilton?
    I hope for his sake he doesn’t play.

  50. HammerHab says:

    Why sign PK when you may end up having to pay the players even if there is no season?

    ———————————–

    It’ll always be Habs Inside/Out to me

  51. Bripro says:

    I’m trying to put a positive spin on this, but it’s pretty difficult.
    I looked at Forbes to give me an idea of the wealth of the owners.
    I wasn’t kidding before when I said that owning a hockey team, for the majority, is a sideline.
    When you’re worth between $2 and $7 billion, what’s losing one season of , say, $30MM. That’s somewhere between 4.5% and 15%, roughly.
    But under Butthead’s gag order, even if they are upset, who is to know it?
    The players on the other hand, have come forward with Fehr in a show of solidarity. Why? Because this is a fraction of their careers that Butthead is playing with. Whether it’s a bluff or not, and I believe the latter, some of the players up on stage might be facing their last season.
    Considering how frustrated we are as fans, imagine the player is on the edge of retirement, knowing that no matter how hard he trains, some young rookie is on his heels, eyeing his job.
    There’s a collective sigh of frustration reminiscent of the oil crisis, where we were held hostage by ever-escalating gas prices (heh! isn’t that going on now?), and nothing we can do about it.
    Oh sure, I’ve read emails and posts about boycotting a particular gas company, but at the end of the day, let’s be honest. If you need gas, will you drive the extra 10miles to fill your tank?
    And when the lock-out is over, if it does occur, will you really blacklist the NHL or stop watching hockey? Probably not. And that’s what Butthead is counting on.

    But if someone decides to hold a pie-in-the-face contest and Butthead is the prime target, then sign me up. I’ll gladly make my way to Manhattan for that.

    • Chrisadiens says:

      Unfortunately, you’re right. I couldn’t boycott the NHL. I love my Habs. Bettman has most of us by the ummm… you-know-whats. We will be back when hockey returns. Makes me so angry to know Bettman has ALL the power.

      Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

      • ooder says:

        this isn’t Bettman.. if you are going to hate, then hate Geoff Molson and the other 29 owners.. however this time around i am siding with them.
        57% of revenue is an insane amount. 50-50 or 49-51 is much more reasonable
        ——————
        The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

        • Sean Bonjovi says:

          I don’t think the players get 57% of “revenue” in the common sense of the word. There are some good articles about this (Maybe by Stu Hackel?, Larry Brooks?) Don’t quote me, but I think “hockey related revenue (HRR)” means operating income minus operating expenses before labour costs. The way I understand it, the players get 57% of the operating profits. I could be wrong. If you see UCE on the board ask him, because I think I found those articles through links that he posted. If it wasn’t him then credit should go to whomever it was, sorry. (I guess the credit should really go to the journalist(s) who wrote those stories, but none of them will ever read this posts so forget them : )… unless it was Stu Hackel, then ALL credit goes to the writer!

          • ooder says:

            honestly i don’t know what HRR means..but the thing is players have 0 financial risk (as opposed to the NFL). all losses to the NHL are taken on by the owners. i know the revenue has grown to 3.3 billion but i am curious about the profit (which IMO matters more)

            ——————
            The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

          • HabFab says:

            It is 57% of Total Revenue (HRR). The non player salary team operating costs come out of the 43% (league average $17.5ML). This is why most teams operate at a loss.
            HRR covers most of hockey generated revenues with notable exceptions being any monies collected from losing players on waivers, costs associated with electronic purchasing of tickets, any profits realized from the operation of AHL teams if owned by the NHL parent club or any monies realized from the non hockey operations of the Arenas if owned or operated by the NHL team.

          • ooder says:

            ahh….good explanation man!

            ——————
            The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

        • Chrisadiens says:

          Gary represents the owners and is brutally trying to pinch pennies for the owners. Bettman is using hardball tactics which is getting old. “Take it or leave it”. The latest offer from the owners was 49% which decreases down over time to 47%.

          Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

          • ooder says:

            if he was protecting your money you would love the guy.
            in the end, the owners are the one with money to lose, not the players.
            ——————
            The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

    • cuzzie says:

      The owners are looking for a 50-50 split. The players think they can get more then good luck. If they play 60 games this season, next years revenues will be based on that. Owners have the leverage from what I see. First three months are useless for most owners.

      Stay Thirsty My Friends!

  52. Chrisadiens says:

    Well after the recent pressers today, I have zero faith we see hockey this year. Assuming that’s the case, I now turn my attention towards the big picture. The PA must now go on the offensive and be aggressive. No more laying down for ownership. Tell the owners you won’t play under a cap anymore. If Bettman wants a fight he will get one. In fact, ask for the resignation of Bettman before you’ll sign a new CBA. Tell the owners you’re tired of lockouts. Make this the lockout to end all lockouts. Tell the owners you’re prepared to miss multiple seasons. Enough is enough man.

    Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

  53. habsfan0 says:

    Is that Bergevin in the photo up there?
    Why isn’t he smiling?

    I’ve seen happier mugs on someone being led to the guillotine.

  54. Bripro says:

    So there goes the beginning of the season, at least.
    According to Butthead, the owners have voted unanimously in favour of a lock-out.

    I guess when you’re a billionaire, and own a hockey team as a sideline, like Anschutz, Pegula, Falcone or Jeremy Jacobs, what’s a lost season.
    How much will they lose? At worst…. $30-40MM of necessary operating expenses? Meh.

  55. shiram says:

    Sam Carchidi ‏@BroadStBull

    I’m told #Flyers will NOT give an offer sheet to Subban and will NOT try to acquire him. End of story.

    It’s been posted before but it warrants being reposted, as it adds the offer sheet bit.

  56. HabFanSince72 says:

    How about that Mitt Romney? Holy Moly!


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  57. Timo says:

    Saw a headline… NHL press conference at 3:30 EST.

    • Bripro says:

      That will be Butthead.
      Fehr is finished.
      Their 2-1/2 meeting concluded nothing.
      Fehr says that the NHL proposal requested a 17.5% reduction in salaries.
      Butthead says it’s 9.7%.

      • habfan53 says:

        Why do I believe Fehr on this one?

        Like the DODGERS “Wait till next year”

        • Cal says:

          Why do you, anyways? Both are greasy lawyers. Since Fehr helped kill the Expos he can go bleep bleep bleep until he gets a deal done. He’s just another piece of bleep who got his useless brother a bleeping job. Did I say he’s a bleep?

          • commandant says:

            Because Fehr is right on this one.

            A reduction in the players share of HRR from 57% to 47.3% is equivalent to a 17.5% reduction in salary.

            9.7%/57% = 17.5%

            Go Habs Go!
            Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
            http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • Cal says:

            Fehr isn’t interested in making a deal. He is, however, interested in telling business owners how to run their businesses. He is going to be a major obstacle in getting a deal done. But…he’ll be on tv, getting his face time. If he did his job properly, they would be announcing a deal now, instead of pissing away a year like he did.

      • SmartDog says:

        When the two dorks can’t even agree on basic math, you know your goose is cooked.

        I really wonder if Bettman talks down to the owners the way he does to everyone else. Hard to believe they put up with him, even if he’s expanded the league.

        ———————————–
        Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • myron.selby says:

        They’re talking apples and oranges. Fehr is saying that if the league is asking the players to take 47.3% while the owners get 52.7% that is a reduction in what the players get of 17.5% which is true. Bettman says it is 9.7% reduction which is also true if you subtract 9.7 from 57.

        Fehr is saying the players will see a 17.5% reduction in their earnings while Bettman is saying it’s 9.7% of the whole pie.

  58. punkster says:

    All this PK trade rumour stuff is nothing compared to what ESPM is reporting…apparently the expected house cleaning is underway.
    – Pleks to Chicago for Cane, straight up
    – Gorges plus a 3rd rounder to Colorado for Johnnson
    – Markov and White to the Blues for Petrangelo

    ***Subb;)ng Baby!!!***

  59. coutNY says:

    Breakdown NHL vs. NHLPA Ok my take is owners want a bigger piece of the pie and the players want to preserve what they have without making immediate concessions:

    In the middle accomplishing this outcome:
    revenue player % pojected $
    2012-13 $3,512.90 52.7% $1,851.30
    2013-14 $3,762.30 50.0% $1,881.15
    2014-15 $4,029.40 50.0% $2,014.70
    2015-16 $4,315.50 50.0% $2,157.75
    2016-17 $4,621.90 50.0% $2,310.95

    plan ——- ——– nhlpa plan middle plan nhl plan
    savings 57% = $864.24 $1,322.09 $1,916.34

    Players don’t need to worry about immediate pay concessions and NHL owners get what closer to what they want.

  60. Mr. Biter says:

    Rumours in Wpg. Sun. P.K. to Philly for Promger. Anyone know any thing about this?

    Mr. Biter
    No Guts No Glory

    • ZepFan2 says:

      I know one thing. That rumour is hilarious!

      A budding superstar for a nimrod with concussion problems.

      Makes sense to me!

      ———————————————————————-
      Ka is a wheel.

      NHLPA vs The NHL: “Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right” – Stealers Wheel

      Stuck in the Middle

    • Bripro says:

      Considering Pronger may never play again, and he’s as old as the dickens, I doubt whichever source you’re quoting is reliable.
      If anything, the most logical, if a trade were to occur, would be PK for Giroux.
      And I doubt the Flyers would be in agreement with that.

      • Cal says:

        That’s the bold Holmgren move we’d like to see. ;)
        How about Habs just keep PK and tell everyone to take a flying leap when they bring his name up in trade talks?

      • coutNY says:

        No way we’d be getting Giroux, I think more like Couturier or Simmonds and pick or prospect… Pk hasn’t had a break out quite worthy to command a Giroux calibre player IMO.

        • Bripro says:

          Give him a year or two, max.
          IMO, he’ll be top 5 in the NHL.

          • Timo says:

            … and thanks to Therrien it won’t be with the Habs.

          • coutNY says:

            in a year or two that maybe… and I think it would be foolish to trade PK from Mtl’s perspective since he seems to have the tools to be a top dman; he has added some size, some maturity, and had shown the ability to play some big minutes without living in the P-box, but just hasn’t put it altogether to prove he is a franchise player yet. Mtl’s has a good core of youth and If they can be patient I think in 2-3 years could have the best top to bottom D-core. As for a trade now, PK’s definately progressing but not sure he’s worth the gamble for Philly to trade their franchise player just yet. Trading potential for a proven commodity, i feel is too much of a risk for Philly IMO. And where would it leave Montreal in teams of Dmen?!?!

    • frontenac1 says:

      Ah Jeeze, Here we go again.

    • kempie says:

      I heard it was Markov for Giroux.

  61. HardHabits says:

    They could remake these NHL/NHLPA negotiations as a modern version of Much Ado About Nothing.

    JB. You’ve got your next idea. No need to thank me buddy.

  62. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Not to take sides but this morning I came to the conclusion that the players, at least the majority of them, are stupid if they help precipitate this lock out. Fans and a lot of the players will be hurt, not the owners, most of whom don’t depend on hockey for their income and some of whom will actually profit from the lack of games. Fighting over a percentage of something is dumb. 100% of nothing is still nothing.
    This morning on TSN, Aaron Ward stated that during the last lockout he lost $2 million and while he regretted losing the money, he didn’t regret taking the stand. Huh? Must be nice to work for principles. Most of us don’t have that luxury.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Imagine that you had marketable a skill.


      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • commandant says:

      No owner will profit from a lack of games. None.

      They still have fixed costs, such as arena leases, management, scouts, hydro on the arena, legal fees, minor league contracts, and numerous other expenses, but are getting no revenue.

      Every team will lose money during the lockout. Its a question of how much.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
      http://lastwordonsports.com/

      • Cal says:

        Wang will lose less than $26 million US this season on his Islanders.

        • Thomas Le Fan says:

          Wang? How much is 26 million to him? How much is he “losing” when the team plays a regular schedule? How much will he be able to write off? 26 million is a meaningful number to you and me. Is it to him?

          • Cal says:

            After 10 years, it’s $260mil in the hole. Significant even for Wang. He should be in Quebec City with his Islanders.

      • Thomas Le Fan says:

        You’re forgetting not all of them only own hockey teams. The teams will certainly “lose money”, at least on paper. The owners? Not so sure. Molson does have another business, if I recall correctly. The players, especially the borderline players will lose much more. In my opinion.

  63. joeybarrie says:

    Michel Therrien.
    Jack Adams nomination
    Stanley Cup Finals
    500 games coached in the NHL
    The favorite of a guy who is clearly a smart GM
    Everyone last season cried out for more fire. Now we get a guy with fire, and we complain that he is gonna screw it up cause he has too much fire…
    I say let him coach a few games before we judge someone that came within 2 games of a Stanley Cup.
    Also someone who Mario Lemieux and Ray Shero had as their favorite coach….
    I think a few incidents have clouded a lot of judgement.
    Ill wait till I see how good a job he does before I comment on him.
    I will say I have faith he will do a lot o good for this team, and if we have a season I think you will see a completely different team fromt he one that finished 3 last….

  64. Bripro says:

    Several teams have started waivers for their two-way contracts. Butthead changed the waiver period for all teams to be able to do it pre-lock-out. These players will not need to pass re-entry when (if) the season starts.

  65. commandant says:

    This CBA issue is going to last a while.

    As I said in my article today, there is no desire for the two sides to meet in the middle. The Owners want to fight a war of attrition and wait for the Players to break when too many paycheques are missed. The players want to divide the owners into groups that won’t support the lockout and break them that way.

    This isn’t about fair, this isn’t about negotiations, this is about winning and losing. And the real losers are the fans, because it will be several months before we have hockey.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  66. Timo says:

    Having Therrien as part of this organization makes me cringe. He WILL eff it up. There is no question about it.

    • Cal says:

      Just keep repeating that to yourself, Timo. We’ve heard it here a million times. ;)

    • habsfan0 says:

      I have as much faith in Michel Therrien leading the Habs to the Stanley Cup this year as I do in Chan Gailey leading the Buffalo Bills to the Super Bowl this year.

      • commandant says:

        Given that we were a 15th place club last year… expecting a Stanley Cup this year is not realistic. The team needs to be built into a contender.

        Scotty Bowman in his prime wouldn’t win the Stanley Cup with our team as it currently sits.

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
        http://lastwordonsports.com/

        • habsfan0 says:

          Since when did realism have ANYTHING to do with posts on HIO?

          • HardHabits says:

            Hello. Mr. Realism here.

          • saskhabfan says:

            How can anybody not enjoy the “realists” on HIO. They look like somebody who has his winter coat,toque and mits on in june claiming its gonna snow. Then when it finally snows, they remind people how right they were but not realizing they spend most of the year looking like an idiot.

          • HardHabits says:

            Aw geez look who crawled out of his hole.

        • Bripro says:

          No, but I think most would at least give him the benefit of the doubt.
          I realize that Therrien wasn’t that effective last time, but he was much younger, and inexperienced.
          I’d like to sit back and wait to see how he performs, before sending him to the gallows.

          • Timo says:

            Then why not Mario Trembley? Same argument applies with him too. There have been so many “wait and see” in the past 20 years and none of them has done well. No cup.

          • commandant says:

            Mario Tremblay didn’t coach another team to the Stanley Cup Final after leaving Montreal.

            Go Habs Go!
            Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
            http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • Bripro says:

            Timo, Commy answered for me. :)
            Besides, to listen to Tremblay even now, years later, on RDS, he’s still a dork.
            Therrien breaks down the plays in his analysis. He calls out specific players and although I’m not a pro coach, for me, he usually makes a lot of sense.
            Tremblay doesn’t even remember who he’s talking about half the time.

      • 123456 says:

        i’m a habs and bilsl fan . . . yes outside my fantastic kids it’s been a terrible decade (or two)

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      In case you’ve forgotten about it, or just have never seen it here’s a radio interview where Rick Dudley calls Brandon Prust a 3rd liner, and says that Lars Eller can play the wing. The problems with this organisation might to right to the top.

  67. shiram says:

    Therrien with a board posting possible lines.
    Needs some Tweaking™ obviously.

    edit : I did not get it from there, but this was posted on Dave Stubbs twitter apparently, so all credit to him.
    Re-edit : image was removed.

  68. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I still miss Boone :)

  69. Max_a_million says:

    Good morning,

    So as much as I disliked the hiring of Therrien, I am starting to come around to his enthusiasm. It will be nice I think to have someone incredibly enthusiastic about coaching the Habs.

    I think we should sign PK for as many years as he is willing to sign for. How about 12 years and 60 million …

    I am ready for some hockey. How about we split everything 50/50 and get the training camps going?

  70. shiram says:

    Thanks for writting and posting all those hockey articles! Welcome to Miss Branswell!

  71. slamtherimtim says:

    nice bio , but this team is no different than last year , he hasnt done anything to write about yet , except the fact he should have PK signed to have this bull talk put to rest , relying on injured players to make the difference will be his short coming in my opion , josh george at 3.9 and max at 4.5 just aint fair , pk not signed , wont admit gomer should be off then team ,

    thanks

  72. Kooch7800 says:

    All BS rumours. Nothing to it. There is nothing really to talk about hockey wise other than the lock out. PK will be a hab for a long time. Our current D is brutal and we can’t afford our top D prospect to walk after letting McD go to the rangers for nothing

  73. ZepFan2 says:

    Those “rumours” are the real verbal diarrhea.

    But enjoy stressing yourself believing those “rumours”.

    Btw, nobody is forcing you to view or post on this site. Just sayin’!

    ———————————————————————-
    Ka is a wheel.

    NHLPA vs The NHL: “Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right” – Stealers Wheel

    Stuck in the Middle

  74. Cal says:

    There’s other sites. This one waits until real news breaks and not lies, rumours and innuendo.

  75. frontenac1 says:

    So now its PK to Philly? Good God, not this nonsense again.

  76. HardHabits says:

    There are.

  77. ZepFan2 says:

    By the tone of your post it seems like you’re about to lose it.

    There will be no hockey, yet you want HI/O to post rumours that are unfounded?

    Breathe in, breathe out!

    ———————————————————————-
    Ka is a wheel.

    NHLPA vs The NHL: “Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right” – Stealers Wheel

    Stuck in the Middle


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