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04-06-2012, 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Habitualwinner View Post
I felt compelled to weigh in on this because there seems to be a surprising amount of support for Julien Brisebois as the next GM.
Interestingly, I work with 2 individuals who have provided me with enough information to realize JB would be a disaster.
Ex-player #1 was in the Montreal organization for several years. Back in January, we talked about his perspective on the Habs organization. Here is what he shared:
1. Montreal runs their ECHL and AHL affiliates very professionally and they treat the players very well. Little things like providing game day meals in addition to giving them a cash per diem. This was in stark comparison to the other AHL affiliate he played for, where everything was done on the cheap.
2. Part of the problem in developing players is that there have been so many coaching changes,particularly at the AHL level, that it is difficult to imprint an organizational style that funnels appropriately to the NHL.
3. He had absolutely zero respect for Brisebois (this was January,2012 remember), who he called " a lawyer and pencil pusher, not a very good communicator" and that he had "no ability to assess hockey talent".
4. He said he was (personally) very well treated by Gainey, who actually helped him transition to another organization when it was clear he had no future with the Canadiens. He also said that even minor pro players too young to remember Gainey's career had instant respect for him because of his "presence" and the fact that he was a Hall-of-Famer. This is not an invitation to Gainey-bash...I am just passing along his perspective.

Ex-player#2 played in the NHL several years ago, NOT for the Habs. He remains well connected into the several organizations because he had a 10 year career in the NHL and AHL. As he is approximately 40 years old, many of his former teammates are now coaching and managing at the NHL,AHL and ECHL levels.

When I asked him last week about Brisebois, he said he would be an awful choice because JB would be: "Gauthier The Second". Independent of ex-player #1, he said " he is just not a hockey guy...he is a lawyer". Briseobois is viewed as not having much of a personality. The reason Yzerman brought him to Tampa Bay is that Stevie Y is "not a numbers guy" and the one thing JB has going for him is that he is a capologist.

Case closed in my books.

Interestingly, Ex-player #2 said that if it was his choice, given the known pool of candidates, he would go with Marc Bergevin or Claude Loiselle, in that order. It was mentioned that they both know alot of people, they are well-respected. He was leaning towards Bergevin because he has had several different jobs and perspectives within the Blackhawks. Bergevin is seen as a rising star within Chicago, which maybe why Scotty Bowman is so actively pushing Maguire (protecting his son Stan down the road).

Three other unrelated points, but interesting to share:

David Desharnais in the view of one of these guys, was the hardest working professional hockey player he had ever seen. No one apparently works harder in practice and harder on the ice. As a result of his uphill battle to the NHL, he remains extremely humble and is still in contact with many former ECHL and AHL teammates who are stuck in the minors or are out of hockey.

While so many people on these boards absolutely love to bash previous management for trading Ribiero and Lapierre, he are a couple of nuggets on them:
Ribiero is so obsessed with his own stats that he used to check between periods of games to see if he got credit for scoring plays. If he did not, he would whine and complain to anyone who would listen and cry to the referees to pay more attention to second assists. How is THAT for a team first player.
Dallas has been desperately trying to get rid of him for several years because of his impact on team chemistry. He is the most hated man in their dressing room.

Lapierre was hated by his teammates in Hamilton and Montreal because he is just as big a rat in his inter-personal relationships as he is on the ice. For example, he used to snitch on his teammates all the time to the coaching staff and management (this guy got drunk, that guy is fooling around on his girlfriend). Basically he is the hockey equivalent of a schoolyard squealer.
Thanks for the infos. Still remains a question of opinion. You say that the Habs are greatly seen for how they run their AHL team, I'd say that Brisebois ran that team for a couple of years. Did he improve it? Did he make it worse? Is he responsible or not for it? You tell me. Yet, he was there. Then, he is not a hockey guy. Well your guys have the most tremendous respect for Gainey and seems to me Gainey did for Brisebois as well. Just like my explanation about Bowman and McGuire, if you have the upmost respect for Bowman, you also have to respect the fact that he thinks the world out of McGuire. By the way, your point about Bowman and McGuire is false. They have been close to each other WAY before Bergevin was considered to be anything.

Now, it's one thing to not think he'd do a good job, but seems that your guy #1 doesn't have a whole lot of respect for suits. To call them pencil pusher and all....I mean, again, that pencil pusher had the respect of Gainey and had enough respect to make Yzerman go for him. So I'm not too sure of his assessment.

Gainey: Well clearly, everybody has respect for him. Doesn't make him a great GM. Not sure what the point is. Nobody ever said Gainey wasn't a respectable man. Just that his time was gone. And frankly, not surprised to see that he treated people well. But thanks for the info.

Okay so Brisebois is NOT a hockey person. Fine. You have to hope that in their 1st and 2nd interviews, guys like Molson and Savard will be bright enough to see this. You have to hope so 'cause now, the problem won't be the GM but the owner and that's more problematic. But then, let's say he is not THE BEST out of it...why not add an assistant GM who will? Aren't we not allowed to have complementary people around you? Burke has 1000 of them, why can't Brisebois?

As far as Ribeiro and Lapierre, well again, it goes back about having 20 milk drinkers or deal with the few guys that might not be schoolyard boys yet, based on talent, you can deal with it. But then, it might not even be about that. Even if we agree that Ribeiro had to go, you don't deal him at this incredibly low value. Geez, we would have had Trevor Daley and chances are we would not have thought that this deal was an awful one. But we should have been able to make him produce yet again after finishing #1 scorer, and have him the greatest value possible. For Lapierre, well suddenly, he's a nice boy who everybody in Vancouver can deal with. 'Cause like I keep saying, once a cancer, always a cancer. Like Avery. And then it goes back to the reality of this market. If Martin recognizes the merit of Lapierre, he still plays here no matter the attitude. But then, we'll see what Timmins can make out of that 5th round pick....we might be happy in the future.

Having said all of that, whether we agree or not with the points you or your friends made, thanks for sharing it. Much appreciated.

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