All Habs Headlines: Wednesday July 11, 2012

On this day in hockey history… In 2008, the Montreal Canadiens traded forward Corey Locke to the Minnesota Wild for defenseman Shawn Belle

ALL HABS HEADLINES

 Gauthier moves on: Somewhat surprisingly given the state of affairs when he left his job in Montreal, it didn’t take long for Pierre Gauthier to find a new opportunity in the NHL.  Yesterday, he was named Director of Player Personnel for the Chicago Blackhawks, a role Habs’ GM Marc Bergevin filled back in 2009.

Stan Bowman believes in Pierre Gauthier (Photo by John Kenney, Gazette files)

While things didn’t work out for Gauthier in Montreal, hopefully he can learn from his mistakes in communication and control in moving on with the next phase of his career.  Without all the responsibilities of a General Manager, Gauthier can focus on his areas of strength, and rely on a team to take care of the rest of the decision-making, something he didn’t do with the Canadiens.

Read more: Blackhawks names Gauthier director of player personnel

TSN990’s days numbered?: In a surprising announcement yesterday, Bell Canada Enterprises filed a request to the CRTC to switch current English-language Montreal sports radio station TSN990 to a French station, RDS990, ahead of the long-planned move of the network to the 690 AM frequency.  Just last summer, the Canadiens signed a 7-year agreement with TSN990 for the rights to English-language radio broadcast of Habs games.  However, Bell is in the process of completing an acquisition of Astral Media, which owns CJAD800 AM in Montreal, and CRTC anti-monopoly regulations would prevent the parent company from holding both CJAD and TSN Radio.  Thus, as part of the announcement, it is mentioned that once the switch to RDS990 takes place, Canadiens games will once again be heard in English on CJAD as they were prior to this past season.

On first blush it may appear that this news may have ramifications both for the media industry in Montreal and for fans listening on radio or by internet around the world.  It is yet to be determined if we can expect CJAD – a news talk radio station – to increase its sports content,  once the changes are implemented.  Although Montreal fans will no longer have an English sports-only radio station, they will fill the void by turning to non-traditional media sources as they have been doing in ever-increasing numbers.  This is all just part of the changing landscape of sports coverage and fan empowerment.

Read more: Bell to convert TSN radio to French

Doan listening, Nash not so much: Two of the biggest names available to teams looking to supplement their offenses have spoken out in recent days about where they might like to continue their careers.  It is no secret that Rick Nash has asked the Columbus Blue Jackets to be dealt, but he is limiting the team’s options by using his No Trade Clause.  His list of acceptable destinations is now said to include the Detroit Red Wings, San Jose Sharks, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, New York Rangers, and Boston Bruins, though there are contradictory reports on the last team.  Of note is that the Brampton, Ontario native doesn’t seem to be willing to move to a Canadian club, thus eliminating any hope of his landing with the Habs.

Shane Doan, on the other hand, is considering all of his options as an unrestricted free agent.  It is believed that there is significant interest in his services around the league, and that he isn’t as quick to rule out possible suitors.  Word from his agent has him at least giving thought to the Chicago Blackhawks, Vancouver Canucks, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks, and yes, the Montreal Canadiens.  However, it is also said that at age 35, he is looking to join a contending team immediately, so that may rule the Habs out in the end, with his agent possibly just using a bid from Marc Bergevin to extract more money or term out of other teams.  Doan hasn’t turned the page on possibly staying with the Phoenix Coyotes, and since the ownership question is still up in the air, there is no timetable for him to make any sort of decision as of yet.

St. Cloud State University hockey team logo

Read more: Interet du Canadien pour Shane Doan

The power of the red C: There is no question that the logo of the St. Cloud State men’s hockey club greatly resembles that of the Montreal Canadiens.  It seems the similarities have paid dividends for the University, helping to earn a commitment from 18-year old Daniel Tedesco, who spent last season with the Toronto Lakeshore Patriots of the Ontario Junior Hockey League.  Tedesco was quoted as saying, “Our family is big Montreal Canadiens fans and as soon as I saw the logo, I saw it as a sign that it was meant to be.”

Read more: SCSU hockey lands recruit Tedesco with… the logo

Habs get top marks: While many Habs fans would have preferred Marc Bergevin to land a marquee-name free agent, there is a newspaper that gives the Montreal Canadiens their top grade for free agent acquisitions.  Who, you ask? Would it surprise you that it’s the Boston Herald?

Some may think that it’s the kiss of death to be labelled a winner by a Boston publication but the authors are sincere in their praise for Bergevin’s acquisition of Prust, Armstrong and Bouillon.

“Bergevin appears to be a man with a plan, and a key component is building a team with more grit and competitiveness to handle, among others, the Bruins.” — Boston Herald

Read more: Plus-minus rating for free agency

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Dan was raised with a love for the Habs since his grandfather was a close friend of Jean Beliveau, Henri Richard, and others of that era. But he only became a diehard in his own right during the 1993 Stanley Cup run. If it is a fact regarding the Canadiens between then and now, he probably knows it. Dan loves to read or watch anything and everything about his team, and started a blog to share his knowledge, a mission he hopes to continue in joining the All Habs team. Outside of hockey, he is a Toronto (via Montreal) marketing and business professional who recently completed an MBA from McGill University.