Hey Jacques Lemaire, C’mon Home

Good old Jacques Lemaire’s name has been tossed about, most recently I think by TV guys on Hockey Central, as the one fellow who should come in and be the bilingual coach in Montreal that so many are screaming for. These men in makeup also say it could even happen, but I also realize they like to hear themselves talk quite often.

It’s not that he’s too old. Lemaire is 66 and albeit no spring chicken, but neither am I and I’m quite confident, thank you very much, that I can be just as swift and efficient a stick boy as any other stick boy. He’s a Montrealer who used to bleed Habs colours, maybe still does a little, and he came out of retirement last year at Christmas and did, as the TV guys gushed, an outstanding job with the New Jersey Devils.

Habs owner Geoff Molson has already thrown Randy Cunneyworth under the bus, saying there will be a bilingual coach sometime soon, so I’ve decided I want Lemaire as the new coach if Mr. C can’t learn French in a hurry. However, Lemaire said last year that the only connection he feels with Montreal now is when he comes back to visit his niece. But maybe he’s an old jokester and is just pulling our leg.

For me it’s a nice thought. Old-school Hab, once a great player with the bleu, blance, et rouge, respected and experienced as a big-league coach, coming in and turning this club around and making Habs fans happy again. Politicians would sit quiet, players would come alive, and the team would begin a steady climb up the standings, this year and for years to come. All because a 66 year old came back home.

Nice to dream sometimes.



17 thoughts on “Hey Jacques Lemaire, C’mon Home”

  1. What about Jacques’ tedious, boring, defensive trap style? He may have been a flying frenchman as a player. but as a coach? I can understand wanting to change the channel on the habs, the reality show, and get down to the business of acquiring a playoff spot but i’m not convinced he is the man……. Scotty likes Pierre McGuire, so do I at first glance…………. One thing is for sure, after the classless and unprofessional way the goat, fired jm and hired rc, it is very clear that he, desperately needs to go before any further moves are made.

  2. Hobo, I’ll take Lemaire’s style if he can get these slumpers to earn their money. I’m not sold on Pierre McGuire. I think he’s a bit of flake and I’m not sure that he’d have the respect of the players. I can see them cutting his shoelaces and having some fun with the guy.
    I don’t know. All I know now is some life has to be injected into these players. What about Larry Robinson?

  3. Lemaire’s coaching style makes JM’s style look like run and gun…He plays the Lemaire trap….

    You know guys with Montreal’s personnel including premier goalie Price maybe its the reality of the only way the Habs can succeed ….Look whats happened since RC opened up the style a bit…

    One thing for sure Lemaire will not take crap off the french media …. One of his looks basically means F.O idiot….

  4. My mistake. Bowman likes McGuire as gm….. So do u get lemaire just to temporarily right the ship? ………… I can just hear pg….. ‘eh jowck, ‘ ow would u like to became da coach of les canadien hon an hinterim base.

  5. Hmm. McGuire as GM. Maybe. I just wonder why he hasn`t had an NHL job in so long. I looked it up on good old Wikipedia and it`s been 15 years. And I find myself getting mad at him often while listening to him. I`m going to have to think about this for a bit. Maybe when I`m driving to work – 32 kms.

  6. Leaf Fan, I think it is the reality. Our stars aren`t huge stars. And they slump a lot. I think an old-school guy can kick them in the ass.

  7. Hobo, it’s a good thing you don’t live in the US. If you wrote or uttered such a comment like that to a minority group there, Asian or else, for example, you would be shot down.

    Consider your comments, people, and the impact they have, whether they are said as a joke or not, the words can be hurtful.

    Ending the divides we have in this world starts with respect and responsibility.

  8. Hi Marjo. I’m not sure if you’re talking about Hobo’s French accent thing, but if you are, I think you’ve misconstrued things. Hobo was using a very old English-French style that even has a name for it but it escapes me now. Writing with a French accent was and even still is, not uncommon. Have a look at this great old poem about Aurele Joliat, where the author uses the very same type of thing as Hobo. http://dennis-kane.com/the-complete-and-wonderful-aurele-joliat-poem/

  9. Hey Dennis, Wow why all the contrevsary?I wouldn.’t even think Hauques would consider something like this,remember he was the cause of Lafleur’s retirement due to his trapping styles and his european style of coaching.I’m sure that the Habs can do alot better then that,Larry Robinson would of course be a great addition,but he is in New Jersey.I’m not in the position to suggest anyone,but I’m sure there are enough coaches around to come up with someone to fit their needs.3-1 after the first,Habs are looking good so far ,alrthough they are getting outshot 13-5.

  10. Marjo
    Not that it would make any difference to a politically correct soccer mom liberal progresive like u, I perfected my mock accent and franglais with invaluable help from my French buddies….When I lived in the U.S my American friends often took great pleasure at poking fun of my funny Canadian accent. They thought I sounded like a leprechaun. I was a minority and they were never shot ……… Smoke a big phatty, lighten up and if you are still upset, report me to the racist language police that thrives unabated in your lovely province. That is what you should offend you.

  11. Oh please not Lemaire. The link to the great teams of the 70s only does so much. I agree with Leaf Fan stuck in Ottawa, his style will make us long for the days of Martin. I say give him a nice seat near Beliveau. Anyways I very much doubt he wants to coach again, he’s already had 3 retirements. Robinson is even less likely as our coach, he resigned as head coach in New Jersey due to the pressure, imagine what Montreal would do to him.
    Dennis I know you don’t want Roy as coach, but he does meet a lot of your criteria; great player, link to the past, and won’t take any crap. I agree though, he’s too inexperienced and potentially unstable.

  12. Chris, that word “unstable” is the key word. Unless Patrick’s calmed down considerably, I can’t see him behind the bench.

  13. Dennis, I cannot believe you are suggesting Lemaire as a possible coach for the habs. Lemaire, in my mind is the major cog in the machine that unlinked the train of great Montreal teams to boring, uncreative, no superstar teams. He started something that the habs have never recovered from. We haven’t had a legitimate superstar forward in 20-30 years (perhaps Denis Savard) But he was on the downside of his career. Mats Naslund was a star for sure but not a superstar.
    If Lemaire were hired on as coach that would pretty well do it for me. The games I hated watching the most were New Jersey games. I don’t know if I could watch that style of hockey from the rouge, blanc, et blue. If it is true that Montreal cannot lure big stars because of the French language issue and/or the pressure of playing in Montreal can you imagine a superstar wanting to play in a Jacques Lemaire/trapping system.
    Despite the impressive win last night, Montreal needs to rebuild to get better……

  14. Oh yeah. I too remember in the mid 80’s Lemaire putting Lafleur on the third line. Sometimes he wouldn’t even put him on the power play because Lafleur just wasn’t getting it. We Habs fans need to realize something. Montreal is no longer that great winning team that stuck fear into the hearts of the opponents. Those of us who can remember those days are living off the fumes of greatness. Those days are gone. We still have the banners and put on great nights when honoring our past heroes but one thing is missing. A great team.
    It is no longer acceptable to be a team that finishes between 7th and 12th. We need to rebuild but let’s not rebuild along the lines of New Jersey. Any success this season or the next that merely squeaks us into the playoffs is no success at all……

  15. Frank, I suggested Lemaire for a couple of reasons. He came in last December and righted a sinking sink in New Jersey. And up until last night at least, the Habs have been sinking and need some serious righting. Lemaire carries a lot of weight, has experience and garners respect, and frankly, I’d rather see a winning team than a loser that plays an exciting brand. Was it really his fault that only Savard and Naslund and a few other stars have been on the roster? And of course the Habs need to rebuild. But they’ve been rebuilding since 1993 and quite frankly, I’m sick of it and want success now.If Geoff Molson says a bilingual coach will be there in the near future and I look at who’s out there, I see Therien and a few others, none of who excite me. Bob Gainey’s name has come up, but speaking of a sad rebuilding job, look no further than him. Yes, I know Lemaire’s style isn’t run and gun, but do we have the team for this? I sure don’t see too many 30 or more scorers on this team.And yes, he and Lafleur’s friendship was broken, but do we know all the facts? We do know from history that Lafleur hasn’t exactly been the easiest to get along at times with other the years. I recall him joining the team in Toronto just minutes before a game because he was in a contract squabble.
    If Lemaire could put this team back on track like he did in NJ, then I’m a happy man. For me it’s all about winning, and along with winning comes excitement.

  16. Frank, if you want to rebuild, start with having a bigger and stronger team with guys who don’t go into deep slumps on a regular basis.

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