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Sports Stu Cowan: Firing Claude Julien won't solve Canadiens' problems

09:50  03 december  2019
09:50  03 december  2019 Source:   montrealgazette.com

Canadiens’ Jonathan Drouin, Paul Byron to miss multiple weeks after surgeries

  Canadiens’ Jonathan Drouin, Paul Byron to miss multiple weeks after surgeries The Montreal Canadiens will be without two key forwards for multiple weeks, the team announced Monday. The post Pirates announce Ben Cherington as general manager appeared first on Sportsnet.ca.Jonathan Drouin will have surgery on his wrist Monday while Paul Byron will have knee surgery Tuesday. Both players were injured in Friday’s win over the Washington Capitals and didn’t play in Saturday’s loss to the New Jersey Devils.

It’s easy to blame head coach Claude Julien for the Canadiens ’ eight-game winless streak. Too easy. It wasn’ t Julien who boastfully gave Andrei Markov and Alexander Radulov “first-come, first-served” contract offers after the 2016-17 season and then watched them both leave

Some fans want Claude Julien fired . I wouldn’t mind seeing that happen because this old-school coach is very much not part of the solution. Stu Cowan : Firing Claude Julien won ' t solve Canadiens ' problems . Share this story.

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

a hockey player wearing a red shirt:  Columbus Blue Jackets’ Eric Robinson scores on Canadiens goaltender Carey Price during first period in Montreal on Nov. 12, 2019.© Pierre Obendrauf Columbus Blue Jackets’ Eric Robinson scores on Canadiens goaltender Carey Price during first period in Montreal on Nov. 12, 2019.

It’s easy to blame head coach Claude Julien for the Canadiens’ eight-game winless streak.

Too easy.

It wasn’t Julien who boastfully gave Andrei Markov and Alexander Radulov “first-come, first-served” contract offers after the 2016-17 season and then watched them both leave, getting absolutely nothing in return for the two veterans.

Canadiens' penalty-killing is killing them this season

  Canadiens' penalty-killing is killing them this season It’s official: The Canadiens now have the worst penalty-killing in the NHL. The Boston Bruins went 2-for-2 on the power play in Tuesday night’s 8-1 romp at the Bell Centre, dropping the Canadiens to 31st out of 31 teams when it comes to penalty-killing with a 71.6 per cent success rate — or a 28.4 per cent failure rate, which seems more accurate. The Boston Bruins went 2-for-2 on the power play in Tuesday night’s 8-1 romp at the Bell Centre, dropping the Canadiens to 31st out of 31 teams when it comes to penalty-killing with a 71.6 per cent success rate — or a 28.4 per cent failure rate, which seems more accurate.

Stu Cowan : Firing Claude Julien won ' t solve Canadiens ' problems What the Puck: Making the Canadiens great again begins at the

Maybe the answer to the Canadiens ’ problems isn’ t in the locker room after all. After the Canadiens got off to a 2-6-1 start, general manager Marc Canadiens players had Sunday and Monday off, giving coach Claude Julien time to try to find an answer and start working on a solution at practice

It isn’t Julien who is paying defenceman Karl Alzner US$4.625 million a year to play for the AHL’s Laval Rocket with two more seasons after this remaining on his five-year, US$23.125-million contract.

a hockey player wearing a red shirt:  Columbus Blue Jackets’ Eric Robinson scores on Canadiens goaltender Carey Price during first period in Montreal on Nov. 12, 2019.© Pierre Obendrauf Columbus Blue Jackets’ Eric Robinson scores on Canadiens goaltender Carey Price during first period in Montreal on Nov. 12, 2019.

While Marc Bergevin has made some good moves since the Canadiens finished 28th in the overall NHL standings two seasons ago and owner/president Geoff Molson decided to stick with him, those two big mistakes have come back to haunt the GM.

With no Plan B after Markov and Radulov both told him to take a hike, Bergevin was left with about $8 million in salary-cap space — money he still hasn’t been able to spend. It’s hard to compete in a salary-capped league when you’re leaving that much money on the table — or in the owner’s pocket. Bergevin should have been able to sign Markov or Radulov, but totally mismanaged the situation.

Julien 'pissed off' after 'bad call' contributes to Habs' 8th straight loss

  Julien 'pissed off' after 'bad call' contributes to Habs' 8th straight loss Montreal Canadiens head coach Claude Julien wore his emotions on his sleeve after his club dropped its eighth straight game on Sunday against the Boston Bruins. Julien was specifically upset with the officials for handing Nick Cousins a two-minute minor for holding midway through the third period which led to David Backes' game-winning power-play goal. "I'm pissed off at the way that was handled" Claude Julien didn’t hide his emotions after the Canadiens lost their eighth straight ???? pic.twitter.

On this week's Hockey Inside/Out Show at hockeyinsideout.com, our panel — Gazette sports columnist Stu Cowan and Eric Engels of Rogers Sportsnet, along with

Related. Canadiens beat Senators for second time in two nights to stay atop division. Habs vs. Senators Sunday boxscore. In the Habs’ Room: Paul Byron scores 20th of the season in front of family. ICYMI: Here’s the latest HI/O Show.

Alzner was supposed to solidify the left side of the Canadiens’ defence and replace Markov, but instead has 0-4-4 totals in 23 games this season with the Rocket, along with a minus-1 rating.

Radulov has 8-7-15 totals in 28 games this season in Dallas after back-to-back 72-point seasons with the Stars, totals that would have led the Canadiens in scoring both years.

There are a lot of problems with the Canadiens, who are 0-5-3 in their last eight games heading into Tuesday’s matchup with the New York Islanders at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., TSN2, RDS, TSN 690 Radio) and things aren’t going to get easier. The Islanders had a 17-5-2 record heading into Monday night’s game in Detroit against the Red Wings and were 6-3-1 on the road. The Canadiens are 11-10-6 and only 6-6-3 at home.

The Canadiens will hold a pre-game ceremony Tuesday night to celebrate their 110th anniversary by honouring 11 former captains: Yvan Cournoyer, Serge Savard, Bob Gainey, Chris Chelios, Guy Carbonneau, Kirk Muller, Mike Keane, Pierre Turgeon, Vincent Damphousse, Saku Koivu and Brian Gionta. It’s too bad none of those guys can still suit up and play.

Canadiens seek a spark with promotions of goalie Primeau, forward Peca

  Canadiens seek a spark with promotions of goalie Primeau, forward Peca Goalie Cayden Primeau will be in a Canadiens uniform Tuesday when they play the New York Islanders at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., TSN2, RDS, TSN 690 Radio). It seems unlikely Primeau will get the start ahead of Carey Price, but the 20-year-old will suit up for his first NHL game after he was called up from the AHL’s Laval Rocket Monday afternoon, along with forward Matthew Peca. Earlier in the day, the Canadiens placed backup goalie Keith Kinkaid on NHL waivers. If Kinkaid clears waivers at noon Tuesday, he will report to the Rocket. © Pierre Obendrauf Goalie Cayden Primeau stops shot by William Pelletier during Laval Rocket practice on Sept. 25, 2019.

Claude Julien (born April 23, 1960) is a Canadian professional ice hockey coach and former player. He is currently the head coach of the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey League (NHL).

Julien was fired by the Boston Bruins on Feb. 7. He coached the Canadiens from 2003-06 and also replaced Therrien to begin his previous stint as " Claude Julien is an experienced and well-respected coach with a good knowledge of the Montreal market. Claude has been very successful as an NHL

At this point, the Canadiens can use any help they can get. And when it comes to Julien, his GM hasn’t given him much — if any — help this season.

It wasn’t Julien who signed Keith Kinkaid to a one-year, US$1.75-million contract this summer to be Carey Price’s backup and then placed the goalie on waivers Monday after posting a 1-1-3 record with a 4.24 goals-against average and an .875 save percentage.

It wasn’t Julien who gave Price an eight-year, US$84-million contract — including a no-movement clause — and it isn’t Julien who has a 10-9-3 record with a 3.18 goals-against average and a .898 save percentage. Those are Price’s numbers, ranking 45th in the NHL in goals-against average and 39th in save percentage through Sunday’s games.

Related

Firing Julien isn’t going to be a quick fix for what’s gone wrong with the Canadiens, who got more bad news Monday when it was learned defenceman Victor Mete will be out for at least two weeks with an ankle injury.

Canadiens Game Day: Former captains inspire Habs to end slump

  Canadiens Game Day: Former captains inspire Habs to end slump Maybe the Canadiens should invite their former captains to every game at the Bell Centre. Or maybe they should just let the players wear the sweaters of former captains and Hall of Famers during the pregame warmups. Those two factors might have helped the Canadiens end their eight-game winless streak (0-5-3) with a 4-2 win over the New York Islanders Tuesday night at the Bell Centre. “I think it brought some smiles to our face before the game,” said Brendan Gallagher, who wore Yvan Cournoyer’s No. 12 during the pregame warmup before 11 former captains were honoured at centre ice to celebrate the Canadiens’ 110th anniversary. “We had some fun.

Marc Bergevin described Claude Julien as a “salt-of-the-Earth gentleman” and it didn’ t take long for the new Canadiens coach to show what the general manager meant. At the start of a conference call Wednesday from his home in Boston

Julien is not a screamer and he won ’ t use Michel Therrien’s heavy-handed sarcasm to motivate a player. Michel Therrien, meanwhile, is doubtless tired of the whole fired -and-replaced-by- Julien thing, because Stu Cowan : Valentine’s Day heartbreak as Canadiens axe Michel Therrien. Now we’ll see if the team responds or if the problem was somewhere other than the head coach’s office.

At this point, it makes more sense to let this season continue to play out. The Canadiens were only two points behind the Toronto Maple Leafs for third place in the Atlantic Division and three points behind the second-place Florida Panthers after Sunday’s 3-1 loss in Boston. If this ends up turning into an ugly repeat of two seasons ago, then Molson will have to blow things up after the season and start using the word “rebuild” while focusing on young prospects.

Does Julien deserve some of the blame for what’s happening? Absolutely.

It’s hard to understand why Jordan Weal and Nick Cousins are regulars on the power play and how Gustav Olafsson was on the ice in the third period Sunday night in Boston with the Canadiens leading 1-0. Olafsson, called up from the Rocket two days earlier, didn’t realize David Pastrnak — the NHL’s leading goal-scorer — was on the ice, allowing him to slip behind him and score the tying goal that led to the Bruins’ comeback victory. And the Canadiens’ penalty killing, which ranked 30th in the NHL heading into Tuesday games, has been horrendous.

But Julien has to use the players his GM gives him. This team simply isn’t good enough, especially after injuries to forwards Jonathan Drouin and Paul Byron. Now you can add Mete to that list. Price has to be their best player and he hasn’t been.

Julien: Zadorov should be suspended for 'dirty' hit on Kotkaniemi

  Julien: Zadorov should be suspended for 'dirty' hit on Kotkaniemi Montreal Canadiens head coach Claude Julien didn't hide his displeasure with Colorado Avalanche defenseman Nikita Zadorov following Thursday's contest. Zadorov caught Canadiens forward Jesperi Kotkaniemi with a heavy hit that forced the Finn from the game after just 47 seconds. The collision caused Kotkaniemi to flip and land awkwardly on his head. Zadorov caught Canadiens forward Jesperi Kotkaniemi with a heavy hit that forced the Finn from the game after just 47 seconds. The collision caused Kotkaniemi to flip and land awkwardly on his head.

TAMPA, Fla. — Claude Julien certainly comes across as a friendly guy who would be fun to have a beer with and share some stories. And right now in Montreal, there are a lot of people who would love to buy the Canadiens ’ coach a beer.

Stu Cowan , Montreal Gazette. And Jacques Demers — the last coach to lead the Canadiens to a Stanley Cup — told TSN Radio 690’s Mitch Melnick there is a problem in the locker room. But if any teammates do have a problem with Subban, they should look in the mirror and ask themselves if they

You can argue whether Julien is a good coach or not, but there’s no doubt he’s a good man. I think he’s a good coach and this isn’t his fault. But Julien might be the one who ends up paying the price if this winless streak continues.

The good thing for Julien is that he still has two more seasons after this remaining on a contract that pays him US$5 million a year.

Bergevin gave him that deal.

scowan@postmedia.com

twitter.com/StuCowan1

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Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin hopes meeting with Ryan Poehling pays off .
VANCOUVER — Ryan Poehling wasn’t happy when he didn’t make the Canadiens’ season-opening roster and was sent down to the AHL’s Laval Rocket — and it showed in his play. “I obviously started off a little slow,” Poehling said last month about his start in Laval. “I think my head just wasn’t completely in it. I was still a little upset about the decision when I got sent down, so I think it affected my game for the first couple of weeks.” Canadiens “I obviously started off a little slow,” Poehling said last month about his start in Laval. “I think my head just wasn’t completely in it. I was still a little upset about the decision when I got sent down, so I think it affected my game for the first couple of weeks.

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