Michel Therrien called today an “important day for myself, my family, and my close friends” at the press conference announcing his hiring as head coach of the Montreal Canadiens.
Suffice to say it’s almost an important day for the Habs following a disastrous season that saw them finish 28th overall, ahead of only Columbus and Edmonton.
Therrien said his intentions are to “bring back intensity, pride and discipline” to the storied club and called it “an honor to coach the Montreal Canadiens.”
Of course, Therien’s had that honor before – he coached the Habs from 2000 until he was fired in January of 2003. But he said he’s changed since then.
“It goes with maturity,” said Therrien, whose contract reportedly spans three years. “I got a lot of experience coaching that club before and I brought that experience and knowledge when I left Montreal.”
The 48-year-old’s hiring hasn’t exactly been met with universal approval by the fans, but at least he’s saying all the right things so far.
Now that new general manager Marc Bergevin has picked his head coach, his attention will turn to the the draft (June 22-23), where the Canadiens will choose third overall.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.