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2021-22 State of the Habs


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2 hours ago, arpem-can said:

  It's a rebuild ...I have no problem with that ...I don't care if Ducharme finishes the season or not at the moment because I'm more interested in how Gorton will deal players  and who he brings in to replace Bergevin as well as  a head scout to replace Timmins ....I'm sure he's got people in mind  ...it's not he just fell off the turnip truck  ....play the kids 

I have a problem with DD at the helm with absolutely no clue how to help these kids develop into NHL players. He's a lame duck coach that's getting canned. Why wait??

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1 hour ago, H_T_L said:

I have a problem with DD at the helm with absolutely no clue how to help these kids develop into NHL players. He's a lame duck coach that's getting canned. Why wait??

I Think he wants to let the new GM  hire the next coach,  Gorton may have a say as to who he thinks should be the next coach, but I believe it lands on new GM to decide.  Isn't it better to hire a coach in the off season than in season? 

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10 minutes ago, Vladimer-Kholokov said:

I Think he wants to let the new GM  hire the next coach,  Gorton may have a say as to who he thinks should be the next coach, but I believe it lands on new GM to decide.  Isn't it better to hire a coach in the off season than in season? 

I can understand that reasoning if the intention is not to hire a new GM until the off season. Gordon has indicated that DD's job is secure until the end of the season. What if he appoints a new GM early next year? Does that change the plan?? I personally hate the fact that DD is in charge of dictating ice time in the development of our kids. We need somebody in charge that recognizes this season is toast and the plan going forward should be giving the young guys all the experience possible and providing guidance on how to react in certain situations. Can't do that in bottom 6 roles with limited minutes.

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Jeff Petry in his post-game commentary to the media, saying that it's frustrating playing right now and that there's no team cohesiveness. He adds "there's no structure, you're always searching to find where people are on the ice." And if that doesn't sum up Ducharme then I don't know what doesn't. His own players are flat out saying he has no system and they don't know where they're supposed to be on the ice at any given time. It's what we're seeing as fans as well. Everyone, fans, media, and even players seems to notice how bad a job Ducharme is doing.

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1 minute ago, BigTed3 said:

Jeff Petry in his post-game commentary to the media, saying that it's frustrating playing right now and that there's no team cohesiveness. He adds "there's no structure, you're always searching to find where people are on the ice." And if that doesn't sum up Ducharme then I don't know what doesn't. His own players are flat out saying he has no system and they don't know where they're supposed to be on the ice at any given time. It's what we're seeing as fans as well. Everyone, fans, media, and even players seems to notice how bad a job Ducharme is doing.

So true! and if it keeps up this team will get even worse hard as that is to believe! we will lose the young players as they just won't care anymore it will be all about their own stats.

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20 minutes ago, H_T_L said:

I can understand that reasoning if the intention is not to hire a new GM until the off season. Gordon has indicated that DD's job is secure until the end of the season. What if he appoints a new GM early next year? Does that change the plan?? I personally hate the fact that DD is in charge of dictating ice time in the development of our kids. We need somebody in charge that recognizes this season is toast and the plan going forward should be giving the young guys all the experience possible and providing guidance on how to react in certain situations. Can't do that in bottom 6 roles with limited minutes.

I do think it changes things if they hire a GM a little after Christmas for it would be his call.  I also don't think it will take long to see that Ducharme has lost his locker room. 

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Yeah I don't even want to talk bad about DD, I feel bad for him, but he's clearly not cut out to be a head coach. When your a GM's 3rd coach, that usually doesn't last very long unfortunately for him. 

I don't think its worth getting a new coach now though. We need the GM in place and I don't want to hire a permanent guy until we have all available options which is only going to be at the end of the season

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12 minutes ago, habsisme said:

Yeah I don't even want to talk bad about DD, I feel bad for him, but he's clearly not cut out to be a head coach. When your a GM's 3rd coach, that usually doesn't last very long unfortunately for him. 

I don't think its worth getting a new coach now though. We need the GM in place and I don't want to hire a permanent guy until we have all available options which is only going to be at the end of the season

I don't see them hiring a new coach now for several reasons:

1. They'd be paying 3 coaches at once this year.

2. They need a new GM and they'll likely allow that person to be involved in the decision-making.

3. Gorton recognizes the value of the tank, so he probably recognizes Ducharme is so bad he's helping our draft.

That said, it has to be balanced against Ducharme ruining the development of younger players, pissing off the current players, and making Montreal a destination players don't want to join. So I do wonder at some point, especially if there's a break forced upon them by what's going on with COVID (and it sounds like the NHL is at least considering this despite what they're saying publicly), whether they fire Ducharme and put Richardson in as the interim.

I'll say it again, but best case scenario I can think of for us now would be Martin Madden Jr as GM and Joel Bouchard returning as head coach. He clearly didn't get along with MB, but now MB is gone. And he knows some of the players in the organization already. Just not sure it makes sense to bring him in, play .500 the rest of the year and end up with the 10th overall pick instead of the 2nd or 3rd.

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And more Ducharme, who stated that the blame can't be placed on Allen because Allen is being played too much... minutes after Ducharme said the Canadiens look lost on the ice. It's like he's calling himself out for being a bad coach over and over. Not only is he a bad coach, he also seems to be implicating himself as the guilty party here. Sounding more and more like Ducharme is one of the major problems in the room right now. Odds have to be increasing daily that we get an interim. Again, I highly doubt we get a new permanent coach, but interim has to be on the table to prevent us from becoming the Sabres. Go interim like Richardson, play the young guys, trade away some of the vets like Chiarot and Allen and so on, start Montembeault a lot, and let the chips fall where they may.

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4 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

I don't see them hiring a new coach now for several reasons:

1. They'd be paying 3 coaches at once this year.

2. They need a new GM and they'll likely allow that person to be involved in the decision-making.

3. Gorton recognizes the value of the tank, so he probably recognizes Ducharme is so bad he's helping our draft.

That said, it has to be balanced against Ducharme ruining the development of younger players, pissing off the current players, and making Montreal a destination players don't want to join. So I do wonder at some point, especially if there's a break forced upon them by what's going on with COVID (and it sounds like the NHL is at least considering this despite what they're saying publicly), whether they fire Ducharme and put Richardson in as the interim.

I'll say it again, but best case scenario I can think of for us now would be Martin Madden Jr as GM and Joel Bouchard returning as head coach. He clearly didn't get along with MB, but now MB is gone. And he knows some of the players in the organization already. Just not sure it makes sense to bring him in, play .500 the rest of the year and end up with the 10th overall pick instead of the 2nd or 3rd.

I like those choices, but I don't think they go with Madden because I think Gorton wants a 'yes, (wo)man'. 

Bouchard could make sense

I choose development over tanking, so if they know their guy and he's available than I'd make the change shortly after announcing the GM

I really wish Caufield was in the AHL this year

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9 minutes ago, habsisme said:

I like those choices, but I don't think they go with Madden because I think Gorton wants a 'yes, (wo)man'. 

Bouchard could make sense

I choose development over tanking, so if they know their guy and he's available than I'd make the change shortly after announcing the GM

I really wish Caufield was in the AHL this year

Gorton' strength has been identifying players who are past or near prime and moving them for a good price. He executed a nice rebuild in New York. But his strength has not been prospect identification and drafting. So I think Madden, with his elite scouting background, would in fact be a strong complement to Gorton in terms of expertise.

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I think Molson needs to weigh paying an interim 4th head coach or playing to an empty arena. As far as i'm concerned DD is toxic to the development of the kids on this team at this point. It's like sending your kids to school with a terrible teacher. Hell,,,, bring back Julien for the balance of the year if it's just a question of money. He's still on the payroll.

I'm all for finishing with a lottery pick this year and dumping some vets at or before the TD, but i'm really concerned with the message our kids are getting from any lack of direction coming from the coach. This is not healthy for the future IMO.

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6 hours ago, H_T_L said:

I have a problem with DD at the helm with absolutely no clue how to help these kids develop into NHL players. He's a lame duck coach that's getting canned. Why wait??

For sure!  The players don't have a clue where to be out on the ice, and Petry even alluded to that. (although, maybe he shouldn't be saying too much) Besides, Molson has lots of money. As bad as it is moving forward, it might be a good idea any ways, to leave DD behind the bench.  I mean, look what's happening in Vancouver!  Boudreau has those guys on a 5 game winning streak already! We don't want that! We don't want to be in no man's land and get a mid round pick. (It'll go to the Yotes, if we do) So, lets keep stanking!

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4 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

Jeff Petry in his post-game commentary to the media, saying that it's frustrating playing right now and that there's no team cohesiveness. He adds "there's no structure, you're always searching to find where people are on the ice." And if that doesn't sum up Ducharme then I don't know what doesn't. His own players are flat out saying he has no system and they don't know where they're supposed to be on the ice at any given time. It's what we're seeing as fans as well. Everyone, fans, media, and even players seems to notice how bad a job Ducharme is doing.

Yeah.  JP said that out loud!!!  Pretty well what everybody was thinking & saying.  Wonder, what happens now?

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4 hours ago, habsisme said:

Yeah I don't even want to talk bad about DD, I feel bad for him, but he's clearly not cut out to be a head coach. When your a GM's 3rd coach, that usually doesn't last very long unfortunately for him. 

I don't think its worth getting a new coach now though. We need the GM in place and I don't want to hire a permanent guy until we have all available options which is only going to be at the end of the season

Yes.  Gotta feel for the guy. & you are right, about end of the season possibilities.  Unless you go with retreads, of which there are many, many available, of which, I don't want any, any, at all.

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3 hours ago, H_T_L said:

I think Molson needs to weigh paying an interim 4th head coach or playing to an empty arena. As far as i'm concerned DD is toxic to the development of the kids on this team at this point. It's like sending your kids to school with a terrible teacher. Hell,,,, bring back Julien for the balance of the year if it's just a question of money. He's still on the payroll.

I'm all for finishing with a lottery pick this year and dumping some vets at or before the TD, but i'm really concerned with the message our kids are getting from any lack of direction coming from the coach. This is not healthy for the future IMO.

They could always make Burrows the interim coach.  He's french, speaks french, and can finish out the season. He has more of an understanding of the roster, coming up from Laval, and would keep the politicians happy. Also, could be directed into concentrating on development. Win. Win.  And, if he wins 5 games in a row, fire him!

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6 hours ago, electron58 said:

Yes.  Gotta feel for the guy. & you are right, about end of the season possibilities.  Unless you go with retreads, of which there are many, many available, of which, I don't want any, any, at all.

I don't feel that bad for Ducharme, to be honest. I don't hate him on a personal level or anything, but in professional sports, you earn your keep or you don't, and he hasn't. He's been grossly overmatched as a head coach and he's been unable to make any type of adjustments. Good on the guy for working his way up the ranks to NHL head coach, but he's clearly not ready. Hopefully for him, he takes this experience and learns something from it and earns another opportunity somewhere else down the line.

6 hours ago, electron58 said:

They could always make Burrows the interim coach.  He's french, speaks french, and can finish out the season. He has more of an understanding of the roster, coming up from Laval, and would keep the politicians happy. Also, could be directed into concentrating on development. Win. Win.  And, if he wins 5 games in a row, fire him!

Burrows has very little experience, outside of being our assistant here. He was brought in to fix the PP and it's been even worse than before he got here. So nothing about him suggests he's better than Ducharme and he should be shown the door too. By all accounts, Richardson is the most-respected guy in the room, and he was the choice for stand-in last post-season when Ducharme had COVID. If GM and JG are clear that Richardson is only here the rest of the year and that he's not being considered for head coaching job, I think it'll fly. He can't be worse than the current guy.

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26 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

I don't feel that bad for Ducharme, to be honest. I don't hate him on a personal level or anything, but in professional sports, you earn your keep or you don't, and he hasn't. He's been grossly overmatched as a head coach and he's been unable to make any type of adjustments. Good on the guy for working his way up the ranks to NHL head coach, but he's clearly not ready. Hopefully for him, he takes this experience and learns something from it and earns another opportunity somewhere else down the line.

Burrows has very little experience, outside of being our assistant here. He was brought in to fix the PP and it's been even worse than before he got here. So nothing about him suggests he's better than Ducharme and he should be shown the door too. By all accounts, Richardson is the most-respected guy in the room, and he was the choice for stand-in last post-season when Ducharme had COVID. If GM and JG are clear that Richardson is only here the rest of the year and that he's not being considered for head coaching job, I think it'll fly. He can't be worse than the current guy.

yeah Richardson would be my vote for interim coach too and it would fly, we've done it twice before already. Richardson would probably help this team a lot though cause I think the team would rally around him. So maybe not quite right away lol 

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You could see this coming for a couple of months now, the guys are done with getting hit and working their buts off try to play for this guy! he is lost and they know it! they have been playing all of their lives they know what is going on after all the losing and not even being close most of the time they are done with him and whatever system he is dreaming of! as for keeping him for the tank I feel it is too dangerous for the team morale and development of the kids. While I like the idea of getting a first overall it is not at any price for me!

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https://www.habseyesontheprize.com/2021/12/15/22830159/montreal-canadiens-need-coaching-staff-understands-state-of-team-dominique-ducharme-future-prospects

The Canadiens need a coaching staff that understands the state of the team

The entire bench is aware of Montreal’s current standing, and yet nothing seems to be changing.

When Jeff Gorton took his place in the Montreal Canadiens organization he stated his intention to keep the current coaching staff in place until at least the end of the season. Now, admittedly there is no good reason to not take Gorton at his word. He hasn’t been the type to not speak the truth when addressing the fans and media. Gorton also made it clear that his first major task was to hire a new general manager for the Canadiens to work alongside him as they attempt to sift through the mess left behind by Marc Bergevin.

The GM does remain the biggest part of Gorton’s job, there are trades to be made and a lot of roster decisions that need to be analyzed by the front office staff, so getting them in place is imperative. However, right now there is a massive problem facing the Canadiens at all levels, and it’s that the coaching staff doesn’t seem to have any sort of clue on how to navigate this difficult season.

On their current seven-game losing skid, the Canadiens have scored a total of 10 goals while surrendering 24 against, and the team has the dubious honour of being the first team to 20 losses this season. Given that the likely end goal is to pick in the lottery and potentially add franchise-altering star like Shane Wright, losses are fine. What isn’t right is losing repeatedly in listless, dull, and flat out bad games where no one seems to be prepared for anything at all.

In fairness to Dominique Ducharme and his staff, the Canadiens lead the NHL in man-games lost due to injury, while also not having both Shea Weber and Carey Price at any point in time this year. Prior to the game against the St. Louis Blues, the Habs had just shy of $52 million on the injured list, they then added Jake Evans to that list as he is now day-to-day as well. As a coach, dealing with that many injuries is about as fatal a blow as one can suffer, but the problems extend beyond the injuries because even when the team was missing just Joel Edmundson and Price, nothing seemed right.

As of the writing of this article, the Canadiens power play ranked 30th in the NHL at 12.8%. Admittedly the injuries have hampered this portion of special teams, but the coaching staff wasn’t getting much in terms of production from either unit. It took nearly 30 games for the staff to put Cole Caufield and Mike Hoffman on the same unit, after putting both on separate units for most of the season. Even more boggling is that the staff doesn’t seem overly keen to utilize Caufield heavily on the man advantage, often leaving him off the ice in the most critical situations.

 

A penalty kill that was nearly unbeatable in the playoffs has been anything but this year. Checking in at 71.0% (30th in the NHL), it remains a frequent disaster on most nights, and it contained almost all of the same personnel as last year before injuries struck. At a certain point, the coaches of these special teams units need to acknowledge their initial plans aren’t working and things need to be altered. If your future in Montreal is on the line, why are you continuing to try to force a square peg into a round hole?

Perhaps the biggest sticking point with how this season has gone so far is the usage of young players or prospects. Throughout the slog of this season, the coaching staff hasn’t trusted the future pillars of the club to handle larger amounts of ice time. We’ve seen Caufield playing eight minutes a night, and Mattias Norlinder playing roughly the same as a seventh defender.

This season is all but lost barring an absolutely miraculous turnaround in the new year. The time is now to entrust the youth with more responsibility. If Ducharme is going to insist on doing the opposite, then Gorton and the next GM may be forced to go back on their initial words. The Vancouver Canucks fired their coach and GM, and have yet to lose under the newly hired Bruce Boudreau. Chicago, while still likely to miss the playoffs, has seen improvements since firing its coach as well.

If the Canadiens are going to be rebuilding around younger players, they need a coach who is willing to let young guys play in high-leverage situations. Ducharme currently isn’t doing that, hell he wasn’t even playing one of his healthy centres in his natural position, and the reasoning behind it doesn’t make much more sense either.

A penalty kill that was nearly unbeatable in the playoffs has been anything but this year. Checking in at 71.0% (30th in the NHL), it remains a frequent disaster on most nights, and it contained almost all of the same personnel as last year before injuries struck. At a certain point, the coaches of these special teams units need to acknowledge their initial plans aren’t working and things need to be altered. If your future in Montreal is on the line, why are you continuing to try to force a square peg into a round hole?

Perhaps the biggest sticking point with how this season has gone so far is the usage of young players or prospects. Throughout the slog of this season, the coaching staff hasn’t trusted the future pillars of the club to handle larger amounts of ice time. We’ve seen Caufield playing eight minutes a night, and Mattias Norlinder playing roughly the same as a seventh defender.

This season is all but lost barring an absolutely miraculous turnaround in the new year. The time is now to entrust the youth with more responsibility. If Ducharme is going to insist on doing the opposite, then Gorton and the next GM may be forced to go back on their initial words. The Vancouver Canucks fired their coach and GM, and have yet to lose under the newly hired Bruce Boudreau. Chicago, while still likely to miss the playoffs, has seen improvements since firing its coach as well.

If the Canadiens are going to be rebuilding around younger players, they need a coach who is willing to let young guys play in high-leverage situations. Ducharme currently isn’t doing that, hell he wasn’t even playing one of his healthy centres in his natural position, and the reasoning behind it doesn’t make much more sense either.

A penalty kill that was nearly unbeatable in the playoffs has been anything but this year. Checking in at 71.0% (30th in the NHL), it remains a frequent disaster on most nights, and it contained almost all of the same personnel as last year before injuries struck. At a certain point, the coaches of these special teams units need to acknowledge their initial plans aren’t working and things need to be altered. If your future in Montreal is on the line, why are you continuing to try to force a square peg into a round hole?

Perhaps the biggest sticking point with how this season has gone so far is the usage of young players or prospects. Throughout the slog of this season, the coaching staff hasn’t trusted the future pillars of the club to handle larger amounts of ice time. We’ve seen Caufield playing eight minutes a night, and Mattias Norlinder playing roughly the same as a seventh defender.

This season is all but lost barring an absolutely miraculous turnaround in the new year. The time is now to entrust the youth with more responsibility. If Ducharme is going to insist on doing the opposite, then Gorton and the next GM may be forced to go back on their initial words. The Vancouver Canucks fired their coach and GM, and have yet to lose under the newly hired Bruce Boudreau. Chicago, while still likely to miss the playoffs, has seen improvements since firing its coach as well.

If the Canadiens are going to be rebuilding around younger players, they need a coach who is willing to let young guys play in high-leverage situations. Ducharme currently isn’t doing that, hell he wasn’t even playing one of his healthy centres in his natural position, and the reasoning behind it doesn’t make much more sense either.

Dominique Ducharme why asked why Jake Evans is on the wing: "do you want to expose a young guy going toe-to-toe every shift with Patrick Kane & Jonathan Toews tomorrow? Or against MacKinnon & Rantanen? Or last night against Stamkos & Palat every shift?"
That quote comes from a coach who sounds like he’s afraid to take chances, which would be understandable if the Habs were in the playoff hunt. The fact is that the Canadiens have won six games all year and it’s almost 2022. Poor excuses, poor tactics, and just generally head-scratching decision-making puts the new Montreal front office in a tough spot. They did say that the staff would be given until the end of the season, but if this is all they’re capable of with their futures on the line, it might be better to cut bait.
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