The Big Three reunited as Lapointe’s No. 5 headed for rafters (with video)

The Big Three was reunited Thursday at the Canadiens Hall of Fame, and during the 2014-15 NHL season they will be together again when Guy Lapointe’s No. 5 goes up to the rafters at the Bell Centre along with Serge Savard’s No. 18 and Larry Robinson’s No. 19.

Canadiens owner Geoff Molson made it official during a news conference Thursday at the Habs’ Hall of Fame in the Bell Centre that the club will retire Lapointe’s No. 5 during the 2014-15 season. The NHL schedule has yet to be released.

Savard and Robinson were both in attendance for Thursday’s news conference, with Robinson flying in from San Jose, where he is now the Sharks’ director of player development.

“He’s one of the best offensive defencemen that we’ve had and with Larry it’s very hard to put a No. 1 between those two. Larry was taller,” Savard said, drawing laughs from the media in attendance.

Lapointe, Savard and Robinson made up The Big Three on defence for the Canadiens during their dynasty years in the 1970s with Lapointe earning six Stanley Cup rings. All three defencemen are in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

“It’s a bit of a dream,” Lapointe said. “I never thought that one day I would have my jersey retired. It’s a big day in my life … to be in the Hall of Fame and now this.”

The Canadiens retired Savard’s No. 18 in 2006 and Robinson’s No. 19 in 2007.

“I was very happy and excited when their numbers were retired,” Lapointe said. “I never really thought about it (not happening for him). I just said if it will happen for me, it will happen. But when it does happen you go ‘Wow!’”

Said Molson: “Guy Lapointe is deserving and worthy of being up there with Larry and Serge. I can still visualize him scoring with that slapshot from the point. For over a decade together, they were the best defensive squad in the NHL, by far.”

Lapointe, who is now the coordinator of amateur scouting for the Minnesota Wild, still holds the Canadiens record for most goals by a defenceman in a season with 28 in 1974-75. He ranks second in career goals by a Habs defenceman with 166, trailing Robinson’s 197. Lapointe also holds the team record for most goals by a rookie defenceman with 15.

“Just to have our sweaters up there with all the other great players, it’s a tremendous honour and I’m very, very happy for Guy,” Robinson said.

“I figured it would just be a matter of time, because whenever anybody talks about the great teams they’re always mentioning the Big Three. But every time you looked up there there was only two. So I think it was very fitting and I think Serge said it best when he called me the other day he said it’s too bad that we didn’t get to do it all together. But I’m happy that the Molsons did it and it’s for the right reason. He was a great player and he deserves to be up there.”

Said Molson: “Guy was always on our radar. In a way, he was kind of overshadowed by the Big Three. In points per game he’s one of the leaders in the history of the league among defencemen. He has the numbers. In Guy’s 16-year career, Larry Robinson and Bobby Orr won the Norris Trophy a combined nine times. That was one criterion we looked at with the Hall of Famers when deciding whose jerseys to retire: all of them have won individual awards, except Butch Bouchard, because they didn’t have that award in his day. Guy never won the Norris, but it’s easy to understand why.”

Here’s the complete list of Habs retired numbers:

1. Jacques Plante
2. Doug Harvey
3. Emile (Butch) Bouchard
4. Jean Beliveau
5. Bernard Geoffrion (Guy Lapointe)
7. Howie Morenz
9. Maurice Richard
10. Guy Lafleur
12. Dickie Moore and Yvan Cournoyer
16. Henri Richard and Elmer Lach
18. Serge Savard
19. Larry Robinson
23. Bob Gainey
29. Ken Dryden
33. Patrick Roy

(Photo by Pierre Obendrauf/The Gazette)

Big Three reunited as Habs honour Lapointe, by Gazette Sports Editor Stu Cowan

Robinson praises former teammate Lapointe, Stu on Sports blog

Lapointe living a dream, canadiens.com

Five more numbers the Canadiens should retire, The Hockey News

Subban lands on cover or Maclean’s magazine, Stu on Sports blog

Koivu won’t be back with Ducks, NHL.com

754 Comments

  1. Un Canadien errant says:

    New thread is up.

  2. Un Canadien errant says:

    Pierre LeBrun:

    The Florida Panthers continue to entertain inquiries for their first overall pick for next week’s draft.

    “We’ve had one, maybe two, concrete offers,” Panthers GM Dale Tallon told ESPN.com. “About 8-10 teams have showed interest but at this point nothing I would do. We’ll see what happens next week.”

    http://espn.go.com/blog/nhl/post/_/id/31523/rumblings-kings-show-loyalty-avs-juggling

    ———————————————————————–
    My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.–Woody Paige

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  3. Un Canadien errant says:

    The daily roundup of rumours and pre-draft, pre-UFA chatter from TSN in text form:

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=455379

    And in video format:
    http://www.tsn.ca/VideoHub/Default.aspx?collection=71&show=384524&section=Sports

    ———————————————————————–
    My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.–Woody Paige

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  4. Thurston says:

    A road trip to start the season, it would appear.

    Dave Stubbs ‏@Dave_Stubbs 2m
    #Habs are opponent in Washington Oct. 9 for #Caps opener; Montreal’s home opener Oct. 16 vs #Bruins. Full schedule coming tomorrow

    Dave Stubbs ‏@Dave_Stubbs 4m
    #Habs open season Oct. 8 vs #Leafs in Toronto

  5. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Ha …opening game of 2014/15 season vs da Beans

    …great way to get passions going

  6. FanSince1969 says:

    LARRY ROBINSON. He is in town already for the retirement. Interview him!!!

  7. jrshabs1 says:

    This is a good time to get Kirk Muller back behind the bench.

    Go Habs Go!!!!!

  8. Goldenchild says:

    Goldenchild agrees with Mr. Canadien errant. Goldenchild really likes Nail Yak for our Habs on many levels. You have to peel the skin back a few layers to see the true hidden value in this guy that has only been 8% apparent last year. Bergie knows this. Expect a blockbuster deal my friends. Your Habs are contenders and are closer to the Cup than many think. Time to deal.

  9. ClutchNGrab says:

    Will the habs replace Gallant? Who would be a good replacement? I heard Melnick suggesting to McGuire Guy Boucher as an excellent replacement, but McGuire thought his gig in Switzerland is too good to leave for an assistant job.

    I can’t think of a better guy to ease the tension, if any, between the coach and a new and improve multi-millionnaire subban.

  10. montreal ace says:

    Huberdeau is a RFA next year also, may as well try to grab him too, give Florida a real good lesson. Best of luck to Gallant by the way, against anybody but the Habs

  11. montreal ace says:

    I hate when other teams poach our organization, to make things right Grudbranson needs an RFA offer from the Habs, just do it MB

  12. Say Ash says:

    Can someone confirm Gallant is head coach of Florida?

  13. PK says:

    Congrats to Gallant.
    Possibly a significant loss for the Habs.
    Hopefully we can find a decent replacement …. help run the
    Power Play.

    >>>> Les Canadiens sont là
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

    “Une équipe de hockey sur glace de l’île de Mont-Royal va gagner la Coupe de Lord Stanley à 24 reprises dans le 20e siècle et trois fois au cours du 21e siècle.”

    – Nostradamus, 1552

    • marv1840 says:

      I live in Miami, so I am excited about Gallant becoming coach of the Panthers. Miami is a good place for him- not much pressure since fans here love basketball and football more than hockey.Having coached Huberdeau before is probably why he was hired. Hopefully, Gallant will take the Panthers to the next level and take the Panthers to the playoffs. Given that the Panthers have finally found positives both in their lineup and with many top draft choices over the years, I don’t think it will be too long for the Panthers to start challenging the Bruins, Canadiens, Penguins and Red Wings to be the top team in the Eastern Conference and to be a Stanley Cup contender as well.

  14. Congrats to Gerard Gallant of becoming new coach of Florida!! All the Best!!

  15. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …like Muller. Gerard was the buffer between those Players who can not stand and tune-out the Head Coach

    …motivationally and strategically Gerard is a significant loss …replacing Gallant by Bergevin will be as important as any Players signings, draft picks or trades this summer

  16. JUST ME says:

    It`s official . Gerard Gallant has been chosen as head coach of the Florida Panthers. Well deserved nomination for him . Always liked him , has an impressive knowledge of the game and an as much remarkable carreer so far at every level of the game and in every roles possible.

    As for the Habs it will be interresting to see what changes it will bring in their game Gallant being responsible for the special units wich are always key in the success of a team .

  17. mdp2011 says:

    @renlavoietva: Panthers confirmed Gerard Gallant is their new head coach.

    Happy for Gallant, but sucks for the Habs.

  18. naweed235 says:

    Gallant the HC for the panthers… Crap

  19. CH Marshall says:

    Argentina forwards (save for Messi) are a frustrating lot

  20. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Of all the players rumoured to be on the block, the one I want the Habs to go after is O’Reilly. He could be the Habs captain for the next ten years. The Avs for sure want a stud D-man but I can’t see any team giving up an all-star D-man given the lack of them in the league. The Habs can give them a replacement, Pleks and plenty of D-men to choose from (minus PK).

  21. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Stop The Kane proposals Now!

    This is a guy with plenty of attitude problems. His numbers also are not to good either.

    Bergevin preaches character, so highly unlikely we get this guy. No Kane PLEASE! Only Kane I want is in Chicago!

  22. HabFab says:

    So strolling thru the WWW came up with the latest in rumors and facts?
    Markov – looking for 3 yr at $6 ml – MB wants 2 yr
    Weaver – would like 2 yrs – MB has interest for 1 yr
    Parros – MB not interested
    Murray – MB not interested
    Gionta – apparently close to a 1-2 yr deal with MB
    Vanek – determined to do the UFA thing July 1st
    Bouillon – would like to keep playing – nothing re MB
    RFA’s – nothing, on the back burner as they only have to receive a qualifier right now

  23. GOOD TIMES 1993 says:

    Because of his season stats..

  24. GOOD TIMES 1993 says:

    Let TV ride into the sunset

  25. habstrinifan says:

    Devante Smith-Pelly RFA Ducks. Nice career at St Mikes. Big GUY

    Is he a player with ‘future’? Seemed to be good scorer in AHL.

  26. habstrinifan says:

    Tiger to return at Quicken? TW FU’s another ‘alternative’ weekend plans.

  27. Sportfan says:

    In the end who ever MB signs will probably be a really decent signing, although I see a lot of people hating it until the season starts.

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  28. D Mex says:

    Assuming for a moment that TV does, in fact, test the market & sign elsewhere, just curious to hear how HI/o-ers think he’ll be received here in the future :
    A- Cheered for his contributions, or
    B- Jeered for not doing more :?:

    ALWAYS Habs –
    D Mex

    • Donkey Hoat says:

      I don’t know the answer, but I think we could use his 30-or-so goals during the regular season.
      Then again, if he really was sulking because he didn’t get his preferred line mates, then he’ll be in MT’s doghouse all year.

    • habstrinifan says:

      I suspect jeered. Not sure deservedly.

    • kalevine says:

      I don’t see why he would be jeered, or particularly cheered. He wasn’t jeered even when seemingly not putting in an effort. In the end though, he wasn’t terrible in the playoffs, just not good enough, sort of like Pleks pretty much every year

    • New says:

      I think no one will really care. They will only care when this year’s second becomes a phenom 6’2″ 210 lbs, net crashing winger who scores 30 goals a year, all set up by Collberg who rolls out 70 points a season year after year after gomez noise year.

  29. adamkennelly says:

    how bout Deryk Engelland? always liked him – he can play decently (he is better than Murray) – doesn’t hit as much but much better scrapper..would be a big improvement on Frankie.

  30. Strummer says:

    Brad Richads – WHAT A STIFF!

    After his buyout his total earnings from the Rangers is about
    $51 million for 2 full and one abbreviated seasons.

    Glen Sather- what a fool!

    ____________________________________________________
    “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

  31. 2mins4lookinsooogood says:

    As a gentle suggestion, no Habs will waive their NTC NMC contracts, no one wants to end their career on a bottom feeder and no team wants the players you think are awful.

    “Don’t crush that dwarf Alex Henry, hand me the pliers”

  32. Ian Cobb says:

    There are only two free agents worth going after outside our organization as I see it this year.

    #1 from Pittsburgh–Defence Matt Niskanen
    #2 from Washington- LW Dustin Penner

    That is all and only if the price is right!

  33. Ian Cobb says:

    Here is my starting roster for the upcoming year!

    Goal Tenders
    Plante Dryden Roy

    Defence
    Robinson & Harvey
    Savard & Lapointe

    1st Line
    Morenz Beliveau M.Richard

    2nd Line
    Geoffrion Lafleur Moore

    3rd line
    Gainey H.Richard Cournoyer

  34. GOOD TIMES says:

    maybe Buffalo would take Briere and Gionta put a good left winger with them not a bad line.

  35. Just wondering have MB approached any of the following Habs players with a NTC in

    Plekanec
    Moen
    Bourque
    Briere
    Gorges
    Emelin

    Are they willingly to lift NTC to move to another team via trade? Any rumors on the above mention? Tks

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      Bourque and Moen might waive to go out west. I very much doubt Pleks has even been approached as there is no way you trade him unless you decide to go full bore with the youth movement, I doubt MB does that.

  36. HabFab says:

    The list of UFA’s according to capgeek;
    http://www.capgeek.com/ufa-finder


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