On more than one occasion during yesterday’s news conference at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard — whether while it was addressing questions about the coaching situation or Scott Gomez’ contract — Marc Bergevin tried to buy a little time by making note of the fact that this was his first day on the job as general manager of the Montreal Canadiens.
Well, Marc. Welcome to day two.
Yesterday’s news conference, which was held to introduce Bergevin as the 17th GM in Canadiens’ history, was the feel-good hit of the (off) season. Team owner Geoff Molson said all the right things when he announced that the hiring of Bergevin represents the first step in re-establsing a culture of winning in Montreal. It’s a theme that the eloquent Molson established the day he announced the firing of Pierre Gauthier as GM.
As for Bergevin, well, it wasn’t too long into yesterday’s 50-minute news conference that the Point St. Charles native had the media chuckling at his self-effacing humour. He poked fun at his well-travelled NHL career (“it was hard because my suitcases were often one city behind me”) and reporters. When one scribe made reference to the fact that Bergevin hadn’t responded to an email, the new Canadiens GM remarked that it must have ended up in his spam.
I’m here all week. Try the veal.
Truth be told, Marc Bergevin was an absolute breath of fresh air yesterday. He’s engaging, personable, passionate, and wears his heart on his sleeve. “I don’t know everything. But I know what I don’t know,” he told me after the formal portion of the news conference broke up.
“I’m going to put people who are going to help me, and I’m going to help them,” he added.
Former goalie and current NHL television analyst Darren Pang, who played with Bergevin for a couple of seasons in Chicago in the mid-80s, told me Marc Bergevin is the kind of guy you want to rush up to, just to shake his hand.
Former NHLer, and current Minnesota Wild broadcaster, Wes Walz tweeted: “Marc Bergevin new Habs GM, one of the top funny people I’ve been around. His sense of humor will help in the meat grinder of being GM in MTL”
Fine. But what kind of job with Marc Bergevin do in his first stab at being a National Hockey League general manager?
We don’t know yet. It’s as simple as that. We just don’t know.
Marc Bergevin hasn’t drafted a single player as GM of the Montreal Canadiens, although he said that he will have Trevor Timmins by his side June 22nd in Pittsburgh. Marc Bergevin hasn’t made a single trade as GM of the Montreal Canadiens. He hasn’t signed a single player to a contract (Hello Carey Price) and he hasn’t bought out a single players’ contract (Goodbye Scott Gomez).
The first move Marc Bergevin made was to call Randy Cunneyworth to let him know that he is no longer head coach of this team. It’s a move that, on paper, puts Cunneyworth back in his role as an assistant coach. But you and I know that the next call Cunneyworth receives will be from the next head coach of the Montreal Canadiens.
And the news won’t be good.
And who will be the next head coach of the Montreal Canadiens?
Over to you, Marc.
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