Canadiens should ask Jacques Lemaire to name his price

money talks, and when it comes to hiring coaches, there is no salary cap. Phil Jackson money would be ridiculous in the NHL – but Jacques Lemaire is surely worth at least half as much as Scott Gomez.

What is the going rate for a superb NHL coach? Right now, Mike Bab***** is believed to be the highest-paid coach in the league at about $2 million a season.

So what do you want? Would Lemaire go back behind the bench for that much or a little more, over three seasons? Only one way to find out, right? As for the cost to the Canadiens, one modest playoff run would more than cover the entire cost of the contract.

Why would Geoff Molson and Marc Bergevin want to consider Lemaire? Because (with the possible exception of Ken Hitch*****) he’s the smartest coach in the NHL. And because if Lemaire decided to throw his hat into the ring, there’s no coach in the running who can touch him in sheer coaching ability, and that includes Alain Vigneault.

There’s a reason Lemaire worked with Lou Lamoriello all those years. I consider Lamoriello the smartest GM in the league. Lemaire was a coach smart enough for Lamoriello. Smarts aren’t everything: Jean Perron has a Stanley Cup ring, after all. But smart gives you a chance. Smart can produce a quick turnaround for a mediocre team. (See Hitch***** in St. Louis.) Smart builds a system that endures long after the coach who put it together has left: it’s happened here twice, with Lemaire and Pat Burns.

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9 Responses to Canadiens should ask Jacques Lemaire to name his price

  1. Boston_Bruins says:

    Torres 25 games, Giroux 1 game. Bang-up job you're doing there, Shanny.

  2. LeafsNation4Ever says:

    Well… Torres is a repeat offender, but I yeah he should be doing something better instead of this "profiling" that's going on IMO. 

  3. Boston_Bruins says:

    Not saying they should be equal suspensions but a 24 game disparity is a joke.

  4. LeafsFTW17 says:

    Did you see the hit during the world hockey championships? Soooo dirty.

  5. Boston_Bruins says:

    yeah, brutal. i guess you can kiss france's chances goodbye now. lol

  6. JoelLeafs says:

    Well I guess if the intent of the 24 gamer was to discourage this type of play it didn't work. Maybe they should have doled out something like 10-15 for Giroux if they're serious about sending a message to players, coaches, and organizations. 

  7. Kessel_Leafs48 says:

    i think the torres suspension was more of a message towards him not as much all the players in general. Giroux doesnt have the backround torres does and has more of a finess style of game. Dont have to send a message to a player that doesnt usually play that style of game in the first place because its not likely hes going to do it again whereas torres may. Punishment was required but not as severe as torres' punishment

  8. JoelLeafs says:

    Granted, but the league's intent is not to discourage this or that player from targeting the head, but to eliminate these types of plays altogether. If they really want to do that, they do themselves a disservice by not slamming anyone for these types of hits with medium (3+ games) to long (10+ games) suspensions.

  9. Steven_Leafs says:

    problem is you cannot eliminate this type of hit, all you can do is ensure that no one throws reckless hits, targets the head, or finishes a check knowing that they would hit the head. Torres knows (as does everyone else or at least they should) that leaving your feet to make a check is illegal and dangerous, Torres has done it multiple times and the last time he did it he said he did nothing wrong.

    Torres deserved a big suspension because he did it before, made no attempt to clean up his game, and showed ignorance to a dirty and dangerous hit when he should have known it was a bad hit. Giroux on the other hand has never done this before and everyone can agree that his intent was not to hit him in the head, that's why 1 game is fine IMO.

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