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09-18-2013, 12:55 PM
Join Date: Nov 2007
Front Office Job
Originally Posted by
Yes, thanks, Killion, I've seen this before, but I guess I missed the part where Richard says "When Mr. Selke asked me to retire ...." I referred to the meaningless front office job and Richard's alienation from the club in my first comment on this thread. The mention of Richard's age puts this clip as coming from 1975 or 1976. It was another decade before Richard made his peace with the club, around 1985, when the Canadiens introduced at the Forum the members of the club's all-time all-star team as one of the many public relations gimmicks employed to detract from the team's lack of success on the ice.
The distance Richard felt from the club and his mention in the clip that no one remembered him play make his emotional reaction to that ovation he got when the Forum closed in 1996 all the more understandable. No one who saw him play had forgotten him, and those who never saw him play, the vast majority, had learned who he was.
But it remains a sad truth that the Rocket is more remembered and honored during the Canadiens' bad years--when the club needs to resurrect him to remind the fans of its glory years and its greatness. When the team was winning Stanley Cups, as in the 1970s, the club could not have cared less and he was ignored.
I've always appreciated Red Fisher's columns, but imagine a sports journalist sitting on the revelation that the Rocket was actually forced out the door, which would have caused an uproar among the club's French-speaking supporters and quite possibly many of its English-speaking supporters. I suppose it's the old story of sports reporters "embedding" with the team and keeping things close to the vest if revealing them might threaten their access to the club. The truth undermined the mythology the Canadiens spun around the club and the Rocket.
From the August 30, 1965 when Maurice Richard resigned his front office job. Reading his responsibiolities support the negatives about how the Canadiens treated some of their greats:
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