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Report: Habs owner stepped in to get Subban deal done

Aug 12, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

Geoff Molson Getty Images

When P.K. Subban signed his eight-year, $72 million deal with the Montreal Canadiens, it’s easy to forget his contract was nearly settled by an arbitrator.

While Subban and Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin were unable to get a deal done initially and went through the full process of arbitration, according to Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette, it was Habs owner Geoff Molson who made sure the court’s decision would never be heard.

“A highly place source has confirmed our theory that it was indeed Molson who overruled GM Marc Bergevin, when it appeared that the club might be saddled with a single-year arbitration contract and a disgruntled star. It was Molson’s call to sign P.K. long-term and it was exactly right.”

Money is and has never been an issue for the Canadiens, so Molson stepping up and getting a deal done worth $9 million per year against the cap isn’t a big deal. Bergevin holding a hard line with Subban to the point where the Habs star may have become disgruntled about not being able to sign long-term is perhaps the most surprising aspect of this.

That said, Molson may wind up being hailed as a hero after all this. Fans in Montreal were eager to have Subban stay in the city and to not potentially go through the agonizing drama of seeing him go to free agency in two years and potentially end up with a rival team.

Call it whatever you want, but at the very least that’s smart business by the owner.

  1. lightning79 - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:14 AM

    Sure makes the GM look good…

  2. drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:16 AM

    Given the final deal, I’m pretty sure what Molson injected was actually in-sanity.

    • elrock7 - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:10 PM

      Given the final deal, its obvious the owner DRANK too many molsons!

  3. stevepopo - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:17 AM

    Subban is a stud. I am intrigued by Gorges having a magic touch on Myers, if Gorges had anything to do with Subban growing in MON so well.

  4. drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:21 AM

    Bruins should probably trade brother Malcolm. I don’t blame Malcolm for having divided royalties, but if you’re rooting for the team that’s playing against the one that employs you, that’s not good as far as conflicts of interest go.

    • drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:25 AM


    • patthehockeyfan - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:32 AM

      That’s not exactly what Malcolm said.

      First of all, yes, he’s a Bruin – a Providence Bruin. He’s not even on Boston’s roster at the moment. Yes, the Boston Bruins employ him. Which brings me to point …

      #2 – He said that he was rooting for his brother. Not for Montreal; but, for his own flesh and blood. I can’t imagine who among us wouldn’t do the same.

      Three – if he ever plays against P.K., I imagine the rivalry will be fierce. He’s certainly not going to let P.K. score on him and the Boston Bruins just because they’re brothers. Just like friendships stop at the face-off circle, so do sibling relationships.

      • wutangwild - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:40 AM

        Well said. Thanks for being rational this morning, Pat.

      • drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:51 AM

        I know what he said, but how do you know that, subliminally, it won’t be in his mind to let his brother have an easier go of it than other players? Granted, I don’t know that he *would* do this.

      • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:18 PM

        If I were a Bruins fan, I would be more worried that Malcolm would “subliminally” (that’s not even the correct word, it’s “subconsciously” but we’ll go with it) choke because of fear of being virtually lynched on twitter after the game.

      • patthehockeyfan - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:20 PM

        troll alert

      • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:22 PM

        Shouldn’t you be getting back to defending Tony Stewart on some other forum?

      • winnipegwonder - Aug 13, 2014 at 5:53 PM

        Exactly! Who’s the guy that didn’t get it? Boston montreal rivalry just got stronger!

    • bsaures - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:35 AM

      That is just stupid. Its like saying if you get a job a coke and your wife prefers to drink pepsi you have to divorce her.

      • drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:53 AM

        Wow, that’s a really lousy comparison.

      • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:00 PM

        drew’s just jealous that okcupid hasn’t worked out for him yet.

      • bsaures - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:57 PM

        Your mother is a poor comparison to a woman

    • hockey412 - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      Yes please let’s make this Habs article about the Bruins.

      • 19to77 - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:20 AM

        It’s drew. He always makes Habs articles about the black and gold grudge he bears.

      • drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:52 AM

        Apparently you’re both unaware that Malcolm is Subban’s brother.

        It’s you guys who have the grudge.

      • drewsylvania - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:55 AM

        So I have a grudge against the Habs. Big whoop. So don’t all Bruins fans, and rightly so.

      • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:05 PM

        drew’s just jealous that every player on his team (and in the league) would rather play for the home crowd at the bell centre than for their own fair-weather fans.

        also: Arcade Fire > Dropkick Murphys

    • 7mantel - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:15 AM

      DO you think the Plager brothers or if your younger Sutter brothers let family get in the way of winning a game ?

    • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:19 AM

      I’m sure it had nothing to do with the racist tweets directed at PK by the Bruins fanbase.

      • patthehockeyfan - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:41 AM

        don’t go there

      • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:12 PM

        It’s not like Boston has history of racism or anything.

      • patthehockeyfan - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:13 PM

        give it a rest, rdk

      • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:14 PM

        You guys made this about the Bruins, so deal with it.

      • patthehockeyfan - Aug 12, 2014 at 12:21 PM

        troll alert

  5. vipod4ever - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:45 AM

    Good deal for the Habs. On the ice, can’t stand PK, but would I want on my team? Yes, the point of juicy that same deal up by a 1M per year. PK will win multiple Norris trophies…think Chelios but better over his career. As for his brother’s comments….blood is thicker than a rivalry!

    • charlie24zz - Aug 12, 2014 at 4:03 PM

      I don’t get why you wouldn’t want a future multiple Norris trophy winner on your team

  6. bmy0913 - Aug 12, 2014 at 9:49 AM

    As much as it pangs me to admit it, I back the deal. Young dman-great two way abilities, still a lot of room to mature and grow. Dude already is, and will continue to be more of a stud. His attitude at times really grates at me, and I don’t mean the agitator gamesmanship part of it. He seems to lose some leadership qualities and focus when the ice starts to tilt. But, all things considered, this is a solid deal. If he would quit diving I’d love to see him in a blue sweater paired with Girardi. He would certainly do wonders qbing the PP.

  7. packerswin96 - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:05 AM

    Everyone suspected this was the case, Jack Todd is a moron for reporting it!

    • i1theinternet - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:34 AM

      Why? Isn’t that his job?

  8. phtjoey - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:15 AM

    with all due respect to mr. molson who is an outstanding person and respected community member, he stepped in too late. this never should have gone to arbitration. yes! bergevin looks bad, but he made his own bed. bad on him for screwing up the process. mr. molson clearly made the right move, but could have avoided embarrassment if he would have stepped in sooner. mr. molson prefers not to mingle in the GM’s affairs, but he held out as long as could before intervening. this is a lesson learned for mr. molson, and complete f-up on the part of the GM.

    • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:24 AM

      Molson probably agreed not meddle after he overruled Bergevin to bring-in Briere and that didn’t turn out so well.

  9. jacques05 - Aug 12, 2014 at 10:30 AM

    @bsaures. That’s hilarious! Of course someone would hope for his brother to succeed! ITS A GAME! Key work GAME!

    Go habs go!!

  10. vancouversportsbro - Aug 12, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    He’s a good player but no way is he worth 9…maybe 7. Yeah they waited too long but that’s too much. Didn’t doughty have contract problems? With two rings and being a big part of his team, he doesn’t make 9 a year. Neither does Duncan Keith.

    • bsaures - Aug 12, 2014 at 1:07 PM

      A) doughty was signed t9 his deal right out of entry level hardly comparable situation and B) keiths was signed 5 years ago and he still has 8 more years on it

    • rdk - Aug 12, 2014 at 1:13 PM

      Whatever. Shea Weber makes $14 million and he’s not better than Doughty and Keith combined.

      • vancouversportsbro - Aug 12, 2014 at 6:37 PM

        Shea Weber is much better than PK Subban. And his cap hit isn’t as bad as Subban’s which is what matters most.

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