Habs get out front in search for new GM

Posted: 03/30/2012 by bc in Uncategorized
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Dial back to late October early November when St. Louis, Carolina, Washington and Anaheim were off to horrendous starts. The Blues snagged Ken Hitchcock to replace coach Davis Payne. The ‘Canes lured Kirk Muller away from the Predators org. The Caps reached back into their own history and brought back Dale Hunter who was coaching the London Knights. Bob Murray waited until the end of November. Acting sooner may not have made any difference. It’s not like Corey Perry and Lubomir Visnovsky have career years every year.

Not to take anything away from Bruce Boudreau but Ken Hitchcock, Kirk Muller and Dale Hunter were certainly more sought after even had Gabby been available sooner.

If as I suspect, Bob Murray’s job is in serious jeopardy, our Ducks many have fallen behind in the search for his replacement. Usually teams wait until the end of the season to dump a GM. Not so with the Montreal Canadiens. The Habitants fired former Duck GM Pierre Gauthier with a week to go. It begs the question why break with tradition. The only answer I have is that the Habs want the jump on everyone else considering replacing their GM.

Other teams rumored to be considering front office changes include New Jersey Devils – Lou Lamoriello, Columbus Blue Jackets – Scott Howson, San Jose Sharks – Doug Wilson, Los Angeles Kings – Dean Lombardi and Minnesota Wild – Chuck Fletcher. It should be noted that Lou Lamoriello is nearing retirement age and might be interested in more of an advisory role than running day-to-day operations.

Montreal is conducting a major overhaul in the front office. Former GM and current adviser Bob Gainey is also terminated. Former Hab Serge Savard, who has his name on the Stanley Cup 7 times as a player and GM is team President Geoff Molson’s lead adviser.

Patrick Roy is the leading media anointed candidate for either GM or coach. An interesting choice would be player agent Pat Brisson, if he’s willing to take the pay cut. Many consider Bolts and former Hab exec Julien Brisebois as the man to beat but I sense Montreal going in a very different direction than bringing back guys who served in the Gainey/Gauthier administrations.

Ducks have nothing to gain by waiting and risk losing out on a good candidate.

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