Habs’ search for new GM gets underway

Habs’ search for new GM gets underway

Montreal Canadiens owner and president Geoff Molson’s news conference to tell Habs Nation that Pierre Gauthier, who seldom talked in French or English, had been fired as general manager — not just because he was aloof, but because he didn’t manage the iconic club well — highlighted the the team’s need for stability.

This is an organization that fired assistant coach Perry Pearn a couple of hours before a game, a shot across the bow at then-head coach Jacques Martin, Pearn’s longtime friend. Then Gauthier fired Martin before the morning skate for a game against the New Jersey Devils a week before Christmas, installing his assistant Larry Carriere as an assistant coach, with absolutely no experience behind a bench. Then Gauthier traded for defenceman Tomas Kaberle when nobody else in the league wanted anything to do with him, taking on a three-year, $12.75-million contract. Kaberle isn’t even one of Montreal’s top four defencemen.

Gauthier was a GM with the Ottawa Senators and Anaheim Ducks before being Bob Gainey’s successor in Montreal, after working at his side for years there. He’s no fly-by-night general manager — he did make an astute move last summer signing Erik Cole — but many people say he’s a micro-manager who wants to control everything. GM’s today delegate. And, again, he was usually non-communicative. When he dealt Hal Gill, Jaroslav Spacek and Mike Cammalleri, he told them they were moving on but wouldn’t tell them where. He told them to wait awhile and left them to run down a list of possible destinations in their heads.


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