And the number is...

Tuesday, 15.07.2008 / 9:00 AM / News
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And the number is...
Visit the Canadiens Team Store at the Bell Centre today to be the first one to own an official Georges Laraque jersey.
MONTREAL – His future stall in the Habs' dressing room may still be empty, but Georges Laraque will be hanging his new jersey in it soon enough, along with his brand new number.

While he may have worn No. 27 for most of his career, including his stints with both the Penguins and Oilers, and even in his junior days in Granby, Laraque knew better than to pry the number from its current Montreal owner Alex Kovalev. Instead, Laraque will don the No. 17 for the first time.

Once he hits the ice for the Habs, Laraque will become the 45th player in team history to wear the No. 17 and the first Canadien to do so since Jason Ward in 2003-04.

Among those in club history to have ever worn Laraque’s new number, Jean-Guy Talbot sported it the longest. The former Habs defenseman had it on his back from 1954 to 1967, winning seven Stanley Cups over that span as the No. 17. Would-be Norris Trophy winner Rod Langway also proudly wore the number from 1978 to 1982 when he was just breaking into the NHL with the Canadiens.

Other notables to have worn No. 17 include: Craig Ludwig, John LeClair and Benoit Brunet. Another little known fact is that the great Jean Beliveau actually had No. 17 on his back in the two games he played with the Habs in 1950-51, before ultimately wearing his trademark No. 4, which now hangs high above the ice at the Bell Centre.

Manny Almela is a writer for canadiens.com

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