The first one to brave the sea of media was owner and president of the Canadiens, Geoff Molson, who did not hesitate to reaffirm from the get-go the trust he had in his general manager and coach.
“The work put in by Jacques Martin and Pierre Gauthier was great. They’re true professionals and they always want to win and do their best to do so,” expressed Molson.
“You always have to dream of the Stanley Cup. I hope that every year, our fans believe and dream about it. On the other hand, it’s so competitive in the NHL that each year, any team has a chance at winning.”
Sharing the same vision as his boss, the Habs’ general manager, Pierre Gauthier, was more cautious with his comments regarding the Canadiens’ upcoming season.
“We are moderately optimistic. On one side, we’re optimistic because we’re back with practically the same team as last year. It’s great for the chemistry and the team’s cohesion. A string of young, talented players had a great start last year and will continue to progress and get better,” explained Pierre Gauthier. “On the other hand, we’ve got to be realistic. All teams have a chance at winning the Stanley Cup.”
For the Canadiens’ general manager, the changes that occurred during the off-season go hand-in-hand with the identity of the team and help fill in the gaps.
“Our identity is pretty clear. We’re a quick, defensive team”, claimed Gauthier. “We always try to keep a balance. I think that a lot of our new young players and the arrival of Cole are enough to fill in any deficiencies we might have had.”
The man that will have to juggle the newcomers, Jacques Martin, was happy with the team he had last year and is looking to continue building on the positives.
“With the young players’ progress, it gives us momentum to continue what we had started last year,” expressed the coach who will be concentrating on the younger players over the next few weeks. “Even though there’s limited space for these players, last year is a testament that anything can happen. Guys like Desharnais, Weber and Pacioretty, those players were key to our success.”
With two weeks to go before the start of the season, Jacques Martin will have sufficient time to do his homework and learn more about each of his players.
Vincent Cauchy is a writer for canadiens.com. Translated by Lee Anne Vincent O’Connor.
Heard on the green
Rookie camp - Day 2
Rookie camp - Day 1
31 players to take part in the Canadiens rookie camp