Canadians seek GM to ‘complement’ new VP of hockey operations – .

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Canadians seek GM to ‘complement’ new VP of hockey operations – .


BROSSARD, Que. – While it remains to be seen how the Montreal Canadiens’ two-person approach to hockey operations will ultimately work, the new Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations, Jeff Gorton, has given an idea of ​​what the team is looking for its next CEO.
“We want to look at all the candidates and pick the best based on what they have,” Gorton said Friday during his first meeting with local reporters. “Maybe this is someone who doesn’t have a ton of experience as a CEO, but what else does she have to contribute?”

“We’re going to look for someone who maybe thinks outside the box a bit, who will help us move forward and complement me. “

The Canadiens named Gorton as vice-president of hockey operations after former general manager Marc Bergevin was fired Sunday following Montreal’s disastrous start to the season.

Gorton, who said on Friday he had agreed to a “multi-year deal,” said the hunt for the Habs’ next general manager has yet to begin. He hopes to build up the hiring process in the next few days but won’t have an appointment ready until Christmas.

Canadiens owner and president Geoff Molson said last week the team was accepting a two-person job to lead the team’s hockey operations. Gorton said the next GM will have a say in the decision-making process and be the one to reach out to other NHL GMs when they eventually take the hot seat.

“I think it was important when I met Geoff Molson that the GM had a direct line to Geoff Molson and could make decisions,” said Gorton. “My role is to use all of my experience to help this person and help do that. even better team.

“I wouldn’t want to be a CEO unless I have the power of a CEO. “

Molson said the Canadiens are looking for a bilingual candidate for the GM position, given Montreal’s unique situation as the only NHL team in a largely French-speaking market.

Gorton, a native of Massachusetts and a childhood fan of the Boston Bruins, began his introductory press conference by reading a statement in French.

“I’m learning,” he said afterwards. “Be patient with me, but I’m learning. ”

Despite the Habs’ struggles, Gorton said head coach Dominique Ducharme’s job is safe for the 2021-22 season.

Two areas that Gorton has already started working on are player development and analysis.

“I think we need to build (the analysis) better to modernize it,” Gorton said. “I believe in analysis and I think that’s how the game went. I think this is important information that we need to have and so we would like to staff it that way. “

Gorton said he liked the player development team already in place. However, he believes Canadians “need more” when it comes to keeping in touch with hopes and helping them thrive.

“It’s important to talk to them every day about their game, what they think about it, the nutrition, everything we can offer them,” said Gorton. “The communication from the time we draft them all the way to the NHL, I think we can do a better job. ”

Gorton is the former general manager of the New York Rangers and has been integral in the recent rebuilding of the team. At the time, the Rangers publicly announced their rebuilding plans to their fans.

If a reconstruction were to take place in Montreal, Gorton would like to have a similar transparency.

“It was the process. We met, we talked about it, we decided to do it and were pretty open and transparent with the fans, ”Gorton said of his time in New York. “In terms of bringing him here, if that’s what we decide, we’ll be pretty transparent. “

Gorton, who was fired by the Rangers in May, watched the Laval Rocket, the Montreal affiliate in the American Hockey League, on Wednesday and his Habs debut, a 4-1 loss to the Avalanche du Colorado Thursday night. He witnessed the moment midway through the third when an angry fan threw his Canadiens jersey on the ice.

“My first concern and my first thought is for the players and the people doing their best and that’s a hard thing to see,” said Gorton. “Obviously it’s been a tough time. Anyone can see it, everyone in hockey can see it. It was almost a perfect storm against Montreal.

The new vice-president will travel to Nashville with the team to continue watching from above when the Canadiens face the Predators on Saturday night.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on December 3, 2021.

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