The Molson Era: Straying From Greatness

The Molson Era: Straying From Greatness

May 21st, 2018 At first glance, the title may seem dramatic, especially from a financial standpoint. The Montreal Canadiens are the third most valuable franchise in the NHL, with a valuation of $1.25 billion. From a business operations standpoint, the Canadiens are 2nd in the NHL in both revenue ($236 million)...
Bouchard Is the Real Deal for the Rocket

Bouchard Is the Real Deal for the Rocket

May 20th, 2018 The hiring of Joel Bouchard as the new coach of the Montreal Canadiens' AHL affiliate, the Laval Rocket, is the first big move of the team's offseason. As the saying goes "It takes a village to bring up a child" and the lack of success in the Habs' ability to develop new talent from their farm...

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Ryan Szporer
Brianne Spiker

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May 8th, 2018
Canadiens History

The advantage of moving up in the upcoming NHL Entry Draft is obvious for the Montreal Canadiens. Whenever a team can move into the top three thanks to a lottery victory or trade, it’s a big deal. But how big of a deal is it to move up just a single spot? Based on historical precedent, it could end up being huge, actually. Take a look at the 11 previous times the third overall pick was far and away superior to the fourth. 11. 1987 – Glen Wesley over Wayne McBean Going in reverse-chronological order, Glen Wesley tops the list. A solid contributor at both ends of the ice, Wesley was taken by the Boston Bruins at No. 3, eventually capturing the Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2006. The Los Angeles Kings meanwhile took Wayne McBean immediately afterward. The difference in their respective lasting impacts is staggering: McBean played just 211 career games, scoring 49 points. Wesley on the other hand? He played in the most amount of games of any defenseman taken...
May 5th, 2018
Montreal Canadiens

It would make for a great story if the Montreal Canadiens were able to re-sign free-agent Tomas Plekanec. That’s for sure. What isn’t for sure is if it would have a great ending or not. Plekanec Close to 1,000 Games Played Plekanec, after literally years of speculation that this would be his last one as Hab, was finally traded away to the Toronto Maple Leafs at the trade deadline. Now a pending unrestricted free agent, the Czech center, who had spent his entire 13-season career up to that point with the Canadiens, has now expressed interest in returning. If it happens, Plekanec, with 981 games played with the Canadiens (998 in all), would have a chance to reach 1,000, becoming in the process just the sixth in the history of the team to do so. That would be an impressive accomplishment and perhaps worthy of a deal on the cheap all on its own, “on the cheap” being the operative terminology. Sure, Plekanec enjoyed a relatively impressive playoff series against the...
May 4th, 2018
Montreal Canadiens

This week I set out three options for the Montreal Canadiens ahead of the 2018 draft. These included: packaging the third pick for a top center, drafting based on organizational need, and trading to exchange first-round draft picks. All three are based on an explicit rejection of the conventional wisdom that NHL teams should always select the best player available in the first round. My colleague Brianne Spiker disagrees. In fairness, she makes some good points. I still think acquiring a top center is essential for the club. At this point and for this organization, all options must be on the table. Keeping the 3rd Overall Pick Spiker argues that keeping this pick would allow the Habs to choose a high-end prospect. The likely top choice is Filip Zadina. A pure goal-scorer, he put up 44 goals and 82 points in 57 games in the QMJHL, along with seven goals in seven games for the Czech Republic at the World Juniors. She correctly notes that the Habs have historically had a lot...
May 3rd, 2018
Canadiens Management

It must feel like 100 years for Montreal Canadiens' fans – imagine how Chicago Cubs fans felt when their team won in 2016, ending a drought that had reached triple digits – 107 years to be exact. So much to say that if teams aren't careful, even the most beloved ones, droughts can reach crippling lengths. There is no such thing as equality of outcomes as far as titles in sport go. Sainte-Catherine Street has not seen Lord Stanley's mug since 1993 and it would appear they are still miles away from a parade. The Canadiens entered 2017-18 with cautious optimism, but that was short lived. General manager Marc Bergevin electing not to bring Andrei Markov back was a major misstep, choosing instead to replace the departing Russian with the combination of David Schlemko and Karl Alzner. Bergevin also allowed Alexander Radulov to shoot over to the Stars, but not before calling into question the Russian's concept of loyalty. And perhaps his biggest splash came when he traded...

Canadiens Archives

Myth of the Montreal Canadiens' Early Success

For generations, the Habs have been dogged by accusations that their historic Stanley Cup success was because they had territorial rights to the best players French Canada had to offer. In this great article, originally published May 12, 2010, former THW contributor Mike Moore lays out why all... February 13th, 2018

The Montreal Forum 1908-1996

The Old Forum in Montreal -- Opening night, November 9, 1908, was a sensation and all 3,000 pairs of roller skates available for rental saw extensive use as thousands of Montrealers came to wander through, gawk at or try out the facilities at what was hyped in the press as “the largest, finest... December 6th, 2017

Jacques Plante: The Man in the Fiberglass Mask

  The month of November is perhaps the most important for any present-day goaltender guarding the crease in the National Hockey League – but most might not even know why.  It was during that month back in 1959 that the position changed forever, thanks to a 6-foot, 175-pound man from... October 9th, 2017

Howie Morenz: Hockey Royalty

This article was originally written in June, 2010. University of Wisconsin’s Blake Geoffrion, winner of the 2010 Hobey Baker Memorial Award for college hockey’s best player, is the new Crown Prince of NCAA Hockey.  Like a champion thoroughbred racehorse, Blake’s hockey blood lines can be... August 15th, 2017