Friday, April 11, 2014

98 Points. Who cares!? Michel Therrien is not the right coach.

not with Michel Therrien as a coach!
image from @weber514 

The date is April 11th, 2014. The Montreal Canadiens are sitting in second place in the Atlantic division. The NHL playoffs are about to start. The Canadiens are red hot (yesterday doesn’t count); actually they’re one of the hottest teams in the NHL right now. However they’re not even close to being considered a contender for Lord Stanley’s Cup.

Are the Montreal Canadiens this good? Or is this just an illusion? In the coming weeks and most certainly next season, we will get a better idea of where this organization really stands.

Most experts had the Canadiens missing the playoffs. Now that Habs have secured their spot in the post-season, most experts are not giving them a chance to get past the second round. Will the Montreal Canadiens suffer a rapid elimination in the same manner as they did approximately one year ago?

I am a fan; I have been a die-hard HABS fan for years. I am one of those guys that has mood swings when the Montreal Canadiens win or lose. Some will say that at this level all we should care about is wins. Although I love when my team wins and overall the 2013-2014 NHL season has been wonderful in that aspect. I will say that I truly think that this season was a complete waste, a disappointment. Let me explain.

-PK Subban won the Norris trophy last season and seemed to be gaining the coaches' trust but actually that is completely false. Some will say look at his ice time. I would say he is misused. He does not play on the penalty kill, his coach does not use him in crucial defensive situations and Michel Therrien benches him at will. It’s clear that Subban is not playing with the liberty to do his thing and because of that he can't be effective. PK Subban has regressed this season. His confidence is at all-time low and I hope I am wrong, but it does not look good for the playoffs.

-Alex Galchenyuk has had sparks of superstardom since he came into the NHL last season. Nobody expected the Montreal Canadiens to do as well as they did this season and for that reason Chucky should have started the season at center. Alex’s natural position is in the middle. He’s exactly what we have been looking for. His passing and play-making skills are comparable to some of the best. Alex Galchenyuk did not improve in any way shape or form this season.

-Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu. No reason whatsoever for these two guys to have spent as much time as they did in the minors this year. They have reached a level in their game that can only further develop with the players in the NHL. I can’t understand how the organization thought that it was better to use Douglas Murray or Francis Bouillon instead of them. They talk about depth and development. The team would have been better served if Beaulieu would have gained experience in the NHL. His offensive contribution would have been a major asset on the power play.

The bottom line is the Montreal Canadiens are not even close to being a serious contender for the Stanley Cup. Michel Therrien has to trust some of the young guys. He won’t! He is a veterans’ coach. He believes that Murray and Bouillon’s  experience is more useful than the size and mobility of Tinordi or than Beaulieu’s smooth skating abilities, first pass skills and sparks of offensive genius. Yes a little late to throw them in the mix with full confidence that they won’t make mistakes but WHO CARES? They can’t be worse than Murray and Bouillon.

THE MONTREAL CANADIENS WILL NOT WIN WITH MICHEL THERRIEN AS A COACH. I don’t care about the record right now. It does not matter how many games we won in regular season. We don’t stand a chance to win the cup “TODAY” so he should have given Alex Galchenyuk more ice time. PK SUBBAN should be used in every situation. HE IS NOT A LIABILITY, he is your best defenseman for God’s sake, and he is amongst the top-ten defensemen in the world! He overused the veterans. Gionta, Markov and others should have never played as much as they did all year. So many strange decisions.

In today’s game you have to trust your young guys. The game is so physical and fast that the older slower guys are lucky to still have jobs in NHL.

The future is Carey Price, PK Subban, Max Pacioretty, Alex Galchenyuk, Brendan Gallagher, Nathan Beaulieu, Jarred Tinordi. PLAY THEM NOW! Use them, teach them! Bring this team to another level.

The amount of points we cumulated this year will mean absolutely nothing once we get eliminated. And then we will evaluate and realize that this season was simply false hope.

Will I be happy if we win? Of course. Do I think we stand a chance? No, I don’t. Do I think the future is bright? Absolutely! BUT NOT WITH MICHEL THERRIEN AS A COACH!

If Therrien got fired from the Penguins with the players that he had and after reaching the Cup Final, why would he be the man to do it here? He did not change. He calmed down, but he did not change. We need a coach that is not scared to trust the youth.

-Have PK Subban and Alex Galchenyuk regressed? (notice I'm not even mentioning Lars Eller)

-Should Tinordi and/or Beaulieu be used instead of Murray and Bouillon?

-Is Therrien the coach that can bring to the promised land?

Let me know what you think. @habsaddict


I've been involved in the game for 25+ years, as a player, a referee (over 15 years), and now as a minor league coach (I coach my 7-year-old son) I can say that I know and understand the game. I'm definitely not an expert, but who is?


I have been involved in the game for 30 yrs as a player, coach and parent and I couldn't agree more. Let the kids play and develop so we can be competitive and dominant for years to come. The Habs have sooo much young talent and the future looks bright if these kids are used properly. If not... they will all sour on Montreal because of poor coaching decisions and end up flourishing elsewhere which would be a real shame. Go Habs Go

A very good article. I could not agree more. After watching the Chicago game, I thought the defense looked better without Markov, Emelin, and Murray.

So, the article and the comments did not explain the reasons for finishing as high as we did in the standings Was this accom[plished without the guidance/coaching of Therrien?? You are right about one thing- the present Habs team will not win a Stanley Cup. Our young prospects give us hope for the not to distant future. In the meantime DO NOT throw them to the wolves. Keep a good mix of veterans around. If we are going to win a Stanley Cup soon, Habs need to do it while Price, Subban, Eller Gally Pac, are in their prime It is all about timing and having the right mix of players at the right time.

Good article, Eitan! Nice to have you joining us here at Habs Addict. I agree, the youth should have been playing over aging vets on expiring contracts.

I often feel the Habs are winning despite Therrien, not because of Therrien. Keep up the good work!

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