Guy Lafleur is a Montreal Canadiens legend, which earns him the right to speak his mind on matters regarding the state of the franchise.
The 64-year-old Hall of Famer didn’t hold back when assessing what the current edition of the team should do in the off-season.
“They have to get some better players,” Lafleur told Pro Hockey Talk while laughing. “The way I look at it right now, there’s no first line, second line, third line. I think they have four fourth lines.”
Still, the Canadiens haven’t been a competitive team since Carey Price went down with an injury on Nov. 25. In fact, they had the best record (17-4-2) in the NHL at the time and have the worst record (17-30-4) since then.
“It’s strange to see that one man could make a big difference because Carey Price doesn’t score any goals,” Lafleur added. “Some of the guys, some of the leaders have to show up a bit more and they have to take charge.”
This isn’t the first time in recent years Lafleur has criticized Habs leadership. In 2014, after the Canadiens came up two wins shy of reaching the Stanley Cup Final, he said the team needed to get rid of players like Pacioretty and Thomas Vanek.
“Your team will never win with players like this who fade when confronted by adversity,” Lafleur said at the time.
Vanek is no longer with the team, but Pacioretty has since been named captain and is a bona fide top-line winger.
The Canadiens have eight games remaining and, unless a miracle occurs, they’ll miss the playoffs for the first time in four years.