The Habs are 100 years old this season and are supposed to win the Stanley. Problem: lots of people didn’t get the memo. Montreal didn’t do much at the deadline and so they had to do something in order to stem the recent tide.
Montreal used to callup Rogie Vachon or Ken Dryden from the minors when this sort of thing happened, but since Carey Price has already begun his HOF career in Montreal there isn’t much left on the farm.
If Gainey really wanted the Stanley this season he’d have traded that Pacioretty fellow to fill holes, but he didn’t pull the trigger and now his team is in a life and death for the second season.
I think Gainey flushed Carbonneau yesterday because it’s pretty hard to fire the coach when the club is on a two game winning streak.
The parallels between Montreal’s management/coach situation and the one in Edmonton are obvious but it’s worthwhile pointing out some quick stats:
- Regular Season Record: 124-106 .539 (18 games over .500)
- Playoff Record: 5-7 .417 (2 games under .500)
- Deepest run: Quarterfinals 2008 (beat Boston then lost to Philly)
- Regular Season Record: 295-297 .498 (2 games under .500)
- Playoff Record: 17-13 .567 (4 games over .500)
- Deepest run: G7 SCF 2006
I counted the OTL as a loss, you can certainly do it another way. I think reasonable men would agree that the Canadiens have had better rosters for the entire time Carbonneau has been coach and for much of this season he looked like a guy who could have a Stanley Cup ring by Canada Day.
It was not to be, and should the Oilers miss the playoffs and retain the coach it might be worth asking about organizational priorities.