Parlez-vous français ?

This is Yvan Cournoyer. I hated the Habs when I was a kid–I say hated but that almost doesn’t do it justice. Montreal in those days represented  Lex Luthor to my beloved Bruins. However, Cournoyer was one of the guys you just had to tip your hat to, because he was electric.

I think Bure would be a modern day comp, but honestly #12 hasn’t been seen before or since. One thing about the Montreal Canadiens that was true in my youth–the annual story of the season was always either Habs Win! or Habs don’t win!

They were, for lack of a better name, the hockey Yankees.

One thing I rarely do on this blog is discuss politics. Mostly because hockey and women are more interesting, but also because it’s a subject that can derail the topic at hand quicker than Lindsay Lohan can, well, pick something.

The French language was always an issue for Montreal fans. Al MacNeil was basically fired after winning the ’71 Staney, because he’d benched Henri Richard during the playoffs. Little or no mention about John  Ferguson’s being pushed to the background, but the Richard issue got MacNeil a job with the Nova Scotia Vayageurs and Scotty Bowman (who could speak French) the best job in hockey.

The French language issue remains, but the Habs are handling it differently. Worse. Badly. Sam Pollock somehow managed to replace his Stanley-winning coach with another guy who had an English last name and not skip a beat, and if you try to tell me the political climate was less edgy then I’ll call you a liar.

This is really about one thing: winning. Habs fans should stop embarrassing themselves with vicious verbal toward their English speaking coach and beg the God they pray to for the day when their French speaking GM gets the gaspipe.

In hockey, politics changes with W’s. Even in Quebec province.

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