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Kovalev and Lindros to play in Montreal alumni game

Mar 23, 2013, 10:25 AM EDT

Alex Kovalev #27 of the Montreal Canadiens skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during their NHL game at the Air Canada Centre March 29, 2008 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (March 29, 2008 - Source: None/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

A pair of dubious figures in Montreal as well as Quebec hockey will be on the ice once again in “La belle province.”

Former Canadiens captain and recent retiree Alex Kovalev and former Quebec Nordiques No. 1 draft pick Eric Lindros will both be participating in an alumni all-star game at Bell Centre tomorrow, as The Montreal Gazette reports. Is it bad form to boo players in an alumni game? That could happen.

Kovalev, who retired from the NHL this week, didn’t leave Montreal under the greatest of circumstances and wound up being a focus of bad feelings and boos when he returned as a visiting Ottawa Senators forward.

Lindros, meanwhile, was persona non grata in Quebec thanks to his famous spurning of the Nordiques after the team drafted him first overall in 1991 only to demand a trade saying he’d never play for the then sorry Quebec franchise. Once the Nordiques moved to Denver, the bad feelings moved on to Montreal where he received similar bad feelings from Habs fans.

It might be worth it to actually get a ticket to this game just to see how warmly (or not) both guys are received by the fans.

  1. ribs108 - Mar 23, 2013 at 10:46 AM

    Ah yes, the ‘most knowledgeable fan base in sports’ sure are classy! I’m sure many of them will show up JUST to boo Lindros…and Joe, it’s never worth getting a ticket into the fan-unfriendly, overpriced Bell Center.

  2. mclovinhockey - Mar 23, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    Ribs must be a bruins fan

    I’ve been to the bell centre a few times. Montreal is like a melting pot for hockey fans. Very friendly when it comes to hockey…. Not the nicest drivers but now I’m just splitting hairs.

    Least friendliest place I have ever been to for sports was Boston. I had stuff thrown at me, was called dirty for wearing flyers/ phillies stuff, it was funny though, every time they tried to insult my team or city they ended up looking like idiots because they seem to have no idea about sports out side of Boston. NOT SAYING ALL BRUINS FANS ARE DUMB, just saying there are a lot of people up there who know the bruins hate the Habs and the sox hate the Yankees and that’s it.

    • matt14gg - Mar 23, 2013 at 1:03 PM

      I am from Boston and wish I could argue with you about this, but it’s true. The true Boston sports fans (and for every one of us there are ten “pink hats” who know nothing about sports) are disgusted by these people. The problem is, it’s mostly college kids that aren’t even from here, but somehow adopt the team because they’ve been living on campus for a year or two. The worst part is they take up a lot of the tickets, and attend the games, because of their proximity to the venues the teams play at. I can honestly tell you most true Boston sports fans (the ones who have been in Boston for more than 10 minutes) do understand and care for the teams they root for and have no time or inclination to harass out of town fans.

  3. thehighcountrybear - Mar 23, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    I don’t think Canadien fans could care less about Lindros…

    Montreal is not Quebec City, and Montreal fans and Quebec City fans are themselves representative of the two solitudes in Canada; the former rooted in English imperialism and the latter tied to Quebecois and separatist sensibilities. Quebec City’s grief with Eric is irrelevant in Montreal.

    I’ve been to many games in Montreal, particularly the old Forum, and the fans are generous, friendly and truly knowledgeable about the game [ hint: there are some 235 outdoor hockey rinks in the Montreal area and zero in Vancouver and the lower mainland ].

    Montreal is a great hockey city with sophisticated fans likely to give Eric ground in any charity effort. Were he sporting a Bruins jersey when he takes the ice, there could be a lynching…

  4. blackandyellow71 - Mar 23, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    Hey McLovin, you don’t need to leave Philly to find the rudest unfriendly fans in all of sports. I’ve been to a number of cities to see my Pittsburgh teams but nothing compares to you guys.

    Hard to see the forest from the trees.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Mar 23, 2013 at 1:24 PM

      That’s funny cause I’ve been to Pittsburgh and was almost punched in the face by some drunk Pens fans for wearing a Flyers hat. Luckily they weren’t too coordinated. Not saying there aren’t aholes in Philly but Pittsburgh fans aren’t saints and angels.

  5. somekat - Mar 23, 2013 at 12:17 PM

    I’m confused. Why would Lindros even be in consideration for a canadians alumni game? even if they are including the nordiques (which would be dumb), he never played for them. is it just a general nhl alumni game? even if they are playing a toronto alumni squad, i refuse to believe an original six team is willing to admit one of they best alumni is a guy who played one season,at the tail of his career, that was so inspiring they let him leave the next year to finish in Dallas.

    • valoisjoeybfeld69 - Mar 23, 2013 at 2:15 PM

      Duh! He’s not playing for the Habs Alumni.


      MONTREAL – evenko is pleased to announce the presentation of the « 2013 All-Star Classic » featuring some of the top NHL players from the 80s and 90s to take on the Montreal Canadiens Alumni on Sunday, March 24, 2013 at the Bell Centre. Hockey fans will have a unique opportunity to see firsthand several Hall of Famers and some of the game’s greatest scorers and brightest stars of the past.

    • DonkeyStick - Mar 23, 2013 at 6:21 PM

      Didn’t quite get around to reading the article before posting did you?

  6. mclovinhockey - Mar 23, 2013 at 12:20 PM

    Hey black and yellow,
    Yeah I never said Philly fans are friendly. In fact I think too many fans in Philly let their passion get in the way.

    The fans who tend be unfriendly are very passionate ones, of course the majority of passionate fans are friendly as well. I have been to Pitt as well and there is a decent fan base there but since about 99% of fans in Pitt have been fans since 05 or later, they tend to be uneducated /:

    The battle of PA is usually between passionate fans and uneducated ones.

    Every team has rude fans and uneducated ones. We have two very big fan bases so the number of those tend to be higher for us.

  7. mclovinhockey - Mar 23, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    It’s NHL alumni vs Habs alumni…. I miss watching celebrity’s vs alumni. I saw one on TV in Boston and it was like a globetrotters game on ice…. Sept the team doing all the wacky stuff was the team who usually ended up losing.

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