Oct 26, 2011, 11:28 PM EST
Let’s face it, there are two ways to explain the Montreal Canadiens’ decision to fire assistant coach Perry Pearn.
1. The team wanted to appease their angry fans by parting ways with someone, even if that person’s name wasn’t “Gomez” or “Martin.”
2. GM Pierre Gauthier wasn’t happy with the power play, which was Pearn’s area of focus.
Naturally, that’s not how Gauthier & Co. explained things to the press, though. (At least not if you take the statement at face value.) Gauthier instead provided an answer that’s about as sensible as firing a staff member a few hours before game time.
“We’re going to function outside the box more than we have,” Gauthier said. “This is one move in that direction … Any time you face new challenges you need to look in the mirror, starting with myself. We’re not looking to place blame on anyone. But to do my job as the leader of this team I need to help people function better.”
Correct me if I’m wrong, but this doesn’t seem like functioning “outside the box,” aside from the very unusual practice of canning a coach moments before a contest starts. It instead follows the time-honored tradition of firing someone merely to make a statement to the rest of your workers. Call it the managerial equivalent to “kicking the dog” transference.
Maybe there’s more to this situation than meets the eye, but it’s an awfully ugly move from the outside.
A lot of times hockey fans overreact to the latest story (see: struggling goalies), but most – if not all – of the snarky responses to this decision have been justified. Gauthier can use all the fancy marketing buzzwords he wants, but let’s hope that his future decisions fit into the “fair and professional” box.
- On the odds of fighting back after Thanksgiving 6
- Why are the Oilers still bad? Look at their drafting 20
- The Leafs are worth almost seven times the Panthers, says Forbes 14
- Isles make some history; Are the Flyers headed for trouble? 41
- Crosby, Malkin power Penguins, help Fleury grab 300th win 5
- Sooner than later? Bruins GM hopes Chara can return in 10-14 days 1
- With worst save percentage in NHL, Oilers fire goalie coach 22
- Pat Quinn, ‘one of hockey’s most respected individuals,’ has died 14
- NHL on NBCSN: Bruins seek perfect game vs. Penguins 8
- Legendary hockey coach Viktor Tikhonov has died 15
- Video: Milan Lucic calls Dalton Prout one-punch ‘gutless’ (99)
- Prout drops Lucic: ‘As far as I was concerned we were engaged in a fight’ (88)
- The Leafs didn’t salute their fans last night, so that’s a thing now (79)
- Jack Johnson filed for bankruptcy, parents allegedly took advantage of him (58)
- Bruins’ Lucic expected to play against Habs after getting one-punched (Updated) (47)