Smart, passionate and somewhat biased commentary about the Montreal Canadiens (HABS) from a lifelong fan now living in Toronto (LeafLand).

An Open Letter to Pierre Gauthier

Mnsr Pierre Gauthier
General Manager
Montreal Canadiens Hockey Club
Bell Centre
Montreal, QC

Dear Mr. Gauthier,

First off let me say that I do not envy you. Your job is very difficult. Especially when there are millions of people who think they could do it better than you. It’s easy for me to sit back, crack open a cold one and shout at the television screen and pretend that I know what I’m talking about. It’s easy for me to think that I would have made all the right moves for the Canadiens in the offseason.

Although I must say, I have been watching and playing hockey for almost 30 years and I do feel I know a think or two about the game, especially where the Montreal Canadiens are concerned.

It’s also easy for me to think that immediate action needs to be taken to put to a halt this epic and record slide for our team to start the 2011-2012 season. A season, I will inform you, in which I boldly predicted the Montreal Canadiens would win the Stanley Cup.

And while I’m still not throwing in the towel on that seemingly foolhardy prediction, I do think that you need to face up to reality and get with the program — which is to start making the very tough decisions. Okay, start making more tough decisions.

I know it was tough letting Mr. Roman Hamrlik go this offseason. I know it was tough signing Mr. Andrei Markov to a 3 year contract when he’s barely played for the past two seasons and still has no definite timetable as to his return. You have a difficult job with many tough decisions. And you make them.

That’s why it’s so important for you to make another one now and relieve head coach Mr. Jacques Martin from his current duties.

Mr. Martin is a professional coach. A winning NHL coach. A good guy who speaks French and is respected by many people. Unfortunately it is becoming very clear that he does not have the respect of his players — the players that you assembled — to put forward our best chance to winning a championship this season.

Mr. Gauthier, I call on you to begin the process of replacing Mr. Martin as head coach of the Montreal Canadiens. No matter what the press and media say, there are some very viable options out there. I have already come forward to present Marc Crawford — former NHL coach and former Stanley Cup winning coach as a potential candidate. There is also Ken Hitchcock, who although has not had much success of late as a head coach, is a professional and dedicated man who could bring a new structure to this team. And he worked for Bob Gainey in the past, winning Dallas’ only championship.

There are others, too.

I truly believe the pieces you have assembled for this year’s edition of the Montreal Canadiens are strong and although we have a few injuries, if healthy, this is the best team Montreal has iced since our last championship in ’93. I know I’m not the only one to think this.

But your team is not playing up to its full potential and I think I know why. They no longer buy into Mr. Martin’s system and they are not playing the kind of system that would help them to prosper and excel. Namely, a system that would allow them to maximize their full potentials.

Mr. Gauthier, it hurts me to see my beloved Montreal Canadiens in such a state. It hurts me to listen to people kick the Habs while it’s down, especially in Toronto. And it hurts me to see such great and proud players struggle for answers. They know this cannot continue. I hope you do too.

I eagerly look forward to your decision and quick attention to this matter.

Yours very truly,

Ari Grief
Habs Fan in LeafLand

PS: Can I have an autographed Carey Price rook gamer jersey? Thanks in advance. HFLL

5 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Pierre Gauthier

  • Matt

    “A season, I will inform you, in which I boldly predicted the Montreal Canadiens would win the Stanley Cup.”

    Don’t all hab fans predicte a Stanely Cup win EVERY season? Yes, I intentionally didn’t capitalize “hab”… last place huh?

  • Matt

    Hey, not like my Bruins are playing much better right now so I should talk! Looks like the Leafs are going to win the cup this year! hahaha

  • Pierre Lachaine

    well put, Habs Fan – I get the sense your letter will be falling on deaf ears, though. Perhaps it’s time for an open letter to one Mr. Geoff Molson…

  • Anonymous

    The habs are clearly on offensive team who need to play under an offensive system. Jacques Martin is a defensive coach and with 3 scoring lines and bunch of offensive defensemen such as PK Subban, Tomas Kaberle, Yannick Weber and Andrei Markov,( if he returns…) We need to go an offensive style and concentrate on scoring more goals than the opposition. We need an Offensive Head Coach!!


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