What’s old is new again in Montreal with Michel Therrien back in the fold as head coach of the Canadiens.
The last thing I want to do is come up with cheesy sitcom references but all day long I’ve been thinking of the old 1980′s show Gimme A Break when thinking of this hire.
The initial reaction to Therrien’s hiring hasn’t been overly positive. Truth be told, it’s been pretty negative. Some fans and observers have been extremely critical of the move. The main reason, of course, being that if it didn’t work before, how could it possibly work this time?
To me, there are many flaws in this overly simplistic theory. For example, take a look at the roster Therrien had to work with in his first tour of duty and you tell me who could have done better? Sure he made some mistakes. Sure some of them were costly. But I think to suggest Therrien hasn’t changed or evolved as a man and a head coach would be completely unfair.
Was Michel Therrien the No. 1 candidate on GM Marc Bergevin’s list? I’m not certain. Is he ultimately the one that will deliver a 25th Stanley Cup in Montreal? Tough to say. Is he a qualified and capable coach? There is absolutely no question in my mind.
Therrien is intense, demanding and passionate, and can sometimes let his emotions get the best of him. Some have used those traits to discredit Therrien yet feel those same characteristics are reasons why Patrick Roy should have gotten the job.
Therrien isn’t perfect but I believe him when he says he’s a different man, a different coach. He has a better understanding of what coaching in Montreal is all about. He’s learned to adapt and adjust over time and he’s a lot more confident in his abilities.
Therrien has paid his dues. Forget the pre-conceived notions of what he’ll do or won’t do. Give Michel a break. Let’s see what he can accomplish before we pass judgment.