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Game #63 Review: Toronto Maple Leafs 4 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins 0 – Maple Leafs Hot Stove

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Just what the doctor ordered.

Your game in ten:

1.  The Toronto Maple Leafs desperately needed to start this game with some urgency. They did just that. All four lines competed well, and while they didn’t generate too many high-danger chances, they looked like an entirely different team compared to Tuesday night. Denis Malgin was flying out there with Tavares and Nylander, and the reunited Engvall-Kerfoot-Kapanen line looked just as quick.

This period looked like two good teams facing off, and while the Leafs didn’t come out of the opening 20 minutes with a lead, it was tough to be disappointed with their play. Scoring the first goal of this game seemed awfully important. The Leafs faced their first test of adversity when Malgin was called for a foot-on-foot tripping penalty with just over two minutes to play.

The Penguins power play looked incredibly dangerous but, thankfully, Frederik Andersen was up for the challenge. Patric Hornqvist wreaked havoc in-front while both Crosby and Malkin were putting on a show. Kasperi Kapanen may have saved a goal by tying up Crosby’s stick in the slot, and Andersen needed to make some big stops, but the Leafs managed to find a way to keep the game scoreless going into the intermission. After the blowout on Tuesday, killing Malgin’s penalty sure felt like a big moment in this game.

2.  Once again, the Leafs started the period with plenty of urgency. Toronto was clearly outplaying Pittsburgh heading into the first commercial break and the team was finally generating more medium-to-high danger scoring chances. Tavares, Matthews, and Marner all had fairly decent chances while Crosby was playing entire shifts in his own zone. While the game was still scoreless, Toronto’s strong play had Mike Sullivan changing up his forward lines.

Toronto’s hard work finally paid off when play resumed, as Tavares won an offensive-zone face and Muzzin blasted a point shot in the back of the net just a few seconds later. They didn’t let their foot off of the gas pedal, either, as more offensive zone time led a Marcus Pettersson holding penalty on Tyson Barrie just over a minute later. The power play had a big chance to expand Toronto’s momentum, and just seven seconds in, Brandon Tanev shot the puck over the glass to give the Leafs an extended 5-on-3 opportunity. 2-0 Leafs. 

Three minutes after the 2-0 goal, Kerfoot sprung Kapanen on a breakaway with a gorgeous stretch pass and the Finnish speedster took full advantage. As an encore, Kapanen soon stood up for Sandin against Hornqvist, then dropped the gloves when Jared McCann challenged him to a fight. While the fight won’t get many hits on YouTube, it spoke to the intensity that the Leafs were playing with. Up 3-0 after two, it was a nearly perfect 40 minutes for the team in blue.

3.  Two weeks ago, the Leafs played outstanding in the opening 40 minutes against Florida, only to look like an entirely different team in the third. The Leafs needed to show that they could keep their attention to detail for an entire game. Zach Hyman helped to take the pressure off by extending the lead to four just four minutes into the frame. After Matthews won an offensive-zone faceoff, Hyman went to his office in front of the net and outworked Justin Schultz, leading to his 19th goal of the season.

Three of Toronto’s four goals tonight immediately followed an offensive-zone face-off win. By holding the Penguins to just two shots in the third, the Leafs proved that they could keep their focus and determination for an entire 60 minutes.

4.  I hated Sheldon Keefe’s forward lines on Tuesday night. John Tavares was busy with one of the league’s toughest matchups, and the Leafs couldn’t have possibly expected much of any secondary scoring with Frederik Gauthier on one line and Clifford and Timashov on another. Playing two fourth lines is never a great idea, and other than when the Matthews line was on the ice, it felt like the Leafs were bound to be outplayed.

Keefe changed up the lineup tonight, going back to the Engvall-Kerfoot-Kapanen line that I’ve been calling for. Kerfoot looked much more comfortable back at center, which is where I prefer him, as he doesn’t quite have the speed to be overly dangerous on the rush or forecheck and he’s far more of a playmaker than a shooter. Engvall’s speed and long reach generated an early takeaway.  This line looked like a defensively-responsible unit that would be a pain in the ass to play against.

The fourth line won plenty of battles, and Malgin had the jump in his step that you’d expect from a player who went from playing eight minutes per night to playing on a line with Tavares and Nylander. Malgin’s screen in-front contributed to Toronto’s first goal, and I didn’t notice a huge drop-off on that line with him on the right-side instead of Kerfoot. The Leafs desperately needed more out of their bottom-six and boy did this lineup look much better tonight.

5.  Sheldon Keefe went back to Frederik Andersen after a 5-2 loss, even though half of the fan base was calling for Jack Campbell. I thought this was a no-brainer, and Andersen’s play tonight sure backed that up. Andersen was hung out to dry on Tuesday — partly due to poor defense, and partly due to Sidney Crosby being Sidney Crosby. Yes, the last goal was on him, but the game was pretty much over at that point.

I love Jack Campbell and I’m thrilled that he’s started off his Leafs career with a few wins. However, let’s not forget that he had a .900 save percentage prior to the trade to the Leafs, while Frederik Andersen has been the backbone of this team for the previous three seasons. Everyone and their grandmother knows what Andersen is capable of, and if I’m betting on a goalie, I’m betting on him.

I’m tired of the painfully stupid goaltending analysis that I see on Twitter after the Leafs allow their fair share of goals. You can’t look at a one-game sample of save percentage and get a perfectly accurate picture of how a goalie played. The Leafs could have given up three penalty shots against Pittsburgh on Tuesday night, and if Andersen let in just one of them, people would complain about his resulting .667 save percentage. Yes, he’s had some struggles this year, but that doesn’t mean you have to resort to the, “I don’t care if there were seven 5-on-0 chances and six tap-ins, I just want saves!” argument over a single game. While we also shouldn’t pretend that every goal against had a 0% chance of being saved, we need to be comfortable with assessing the quality of the scoring chances against rather than just pointing to a one-game sample of save percentage and complaining.

There’s a lot of people who owe Freddy an apology right about now. He certainly wasn’t the only reason they won tonight, but he made key saves on Pittsburgh’s late power-play opportunity in the first, where a goal really would have changed the momentum heading into the intermission.

6.  Nearly two years ago, I wrote an article suggesting that the Leafs should buy-low on Jared McCann. The talented forward made the NHL at 19, had already been traded once, and he wasn’t getting much of an opportunity in Florida. He was just about to turn 22, but it didn’t feel like he was all that young, as he had already been around the league for a few years.

I thought it was fitting that Denis Malgin made his Leafs debut against McCann, as he also made the NHL as a teenager, only to end up playing limited minutes in Florida. While he’s in the middle of his fourth NHL season, he’s a year younger than Pierre Engvall and Adam Brooks. While I’m not quite as high on Malgin as I was on McCann (mainly due to McCann’s ability to go to the net and win puck battles), I like the idea of taking advantage of “prospect fatigue”. Malgin wasn’t a superstar tonight, but he may have helped to convince Keefe to put Kerfoot back on the third line. I’d put him back there on Saturday night.

7.  There isn’t an “A” on Jake Muzzin‘s jersey, but there should be. After the veteran defenseman was vocal about Toronto’s compete level following Tuesday’s loss, he certainly led by example tonight. His opening goal got the Leafs started on the right foot and he made a quick outlet pass prior to Kapanen’s goal. He picked up another secondary assist on Hyman’s third-period goal and was effective in a challenging shutdown role all night.

Another player who stood out tonight was Rasmus Sandin, who looked like a seasoned veteran against one of the NHL’s best teams. His first pass consistently gets the Leafs moving in the right direction and he did not shy away in numerous physical battles with a heavy power forward in Hornqvist. His partner, Tyson Barrie, was sharp tonight as well.

8.  Special teams were a big focus heading into this game, as the Penguins scored three powerplay goals on four attempts on Tuesday night. Keefe mentioned that it was time to fill in special teams on the “bingo card” for the team’s struggles of late, so I was interested to see how the team would respond.

They responded by only taking one penalty, and it was the new addition who was the guilty party. It wasn’t even a stick infraction. It’s not like the refs were missing calls left, right, and center. While the Penguins power play did look terrifying on their one chance, Toronto’s best penalty killer was their goalie, and the Leafs also took full advantage of their 5-on-3 chance to keep their momentum going.

9.  Bob McKenzie mentioned on the broadcast tonight that the Leafs have been receiving calls about Tyson Barrie, who is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent after the season. McKenzie stated that the Leafs aren’t selling but would consider trading Barrie if they could get another good defenseman in return. He also mentioned that they might be able to get a package of picks or prospects for Barrie, then flip those pieces as part of a deal for a player with term.

This type of deal is easier said than done, but it doesn’t look like the Leafs have the cap room to re-sign Barrie and it would tough to see him walk out the door for nothing. If they can get someone like Damon Severson — who could play next to Rielly or Sandin for years to come — I’m certainly interested. Barrie needs to be given sheltered minutes and with two rookies in the picture right now, I think Keefe wanted a more defensive-defenceman in the lineup in Marincin to help matchup against Malkin. At the very least, I’m glad that the Leafs are looking into being creative while focusing on players with term.

10.  This was the signature win of the Leafs season. Before the game, I identified the seven teams in the league that I consider to be the easiest matchups: Detroit, Ottawa, New Jersey, Anaheim, San Jose, Los Angeles, and Minnesota. I looked up the Leafs record against those teams and found that they were 13-0.

It goes without saying that every team has a worse record against contenders, but it feels like the Leafs had taken this to an extreme this year. I also identified the seven teams in the league that I consider to be the toughest matchups: Tampa Bay, Boston, Pittsburgh, Washington, St.Louis, Dallas, and Colorado. The Leafs were 4-9-1 against these teams heading into tonight — and many of the wins they didn’t deserve. They were outshot 37-27 in their win against Colorado and the Avalanche didn’t have Landeskog and Rantanen that night. They beat Boston in overtime after being outshot 46-29 and won against St.Louis when Binnington had an off night.

You can certainly nitpick this exercise — and maybe I was too kind to Chicago (who they are 0-2 against) — but you’ll still be in tough to find many signature wins from the Leafs schedule. The 8-7 win against Carolina comes to mind, but they were horrible for half of that game and blew a huge lead. After having their competitiveness, maturity, and intensity questioned on Tuesday night, the Leafs responded by dominating an elite hockey team and playing a full 60 minutes. That’s a signature win in my books.


Game Flow: 5v5 Shot Attempts


Heat Map: 5v5 Shot Attempt Locations

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Pittsburgh Penguins


Game Highlights: Leafs 4 vs. Penguins 0

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Riders outlast Stamps in OT thriller to move on to Western Final – CFL.ca

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REGINA — The Saskatchewan Roughriders survived a slugfest of a night to defeat the Calgary Stampeders 33-30 to advance to the Western Final.

Cody Fajardo survived a four-interception night and Brett Lauther hit a 34-yard field goal to put the game away, as the Riders advance to their second consecutive Western Final. They’ll face the Winnipeg Blue Bombers at IG Field on Dec. 5, to battle for a berth in the 108th Grey Cup.

Bo Levi Mitchell made 24-32 passes for 285 yards, had zero touchdowns and two interceptions.

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» Watch: Riders’ onside kick leads to a TD to begin second half

The Riders got the game going with a bit of an emotional roller coaster.

Jamal Morrow thought he had a missed field goal return touchdown, but found out that his 124-yard trip to the end zone was wiped out by an illegal block. That moved Saskatchewan back to its own five-yard line. Two plays later, Fajardo was intercepted by Jonathan Moxey. One Mitchell handoff to Ka’Deem Carey later, the Stamps’ running back had trucked five yards into the end zone to give Calgary the lead. Rene Paredes‘ convert made it a 7-0 game at 7:02.

The half quickly settled into a defensive battle, with Moxey pulling in a team-record-tying three interceptions before halftime. Ed Gainey got the best of Mitchell twice, with a pair of interceptions. While the potential was there for big plays on each turnover, including a Calgary turnover on downs, neither offence was able to capitalize the way they wanted to.

After a Brett Lauther chip shot 16-yard field goal, the Riders got a breakthrough on special teams. Returner Jamal Morrow took a Cody Grace punt back 69 yards for the touchdown, putting the Riders in front for the first time in the game. Rene Paredes‘ convert made it a 10-7 Riders lead at 7:26 of the second quarter.

Paredes had an out-of-character first half, missing field goals to open and close out the half. The teams got into a skirmish on the way to their locker rooms and it ended up carrying grave consequences for Calgary, as veteran d-lineman Shawn Lemon was disqualified from the game for what officials deemed as rough play.

Off the penalty on the Lemon ejection, the Riders executed a perfect onside kick from Calgary’s 50-yard line, with A.C. Leonard pulling the ball in. Fajardo quickly found Kian Schaffer-Baker three plays later for a six-yard touchdown pass. Lauther was back out on the field at 1:49 to kick the convert through to give the Riders a 17-8 lead.

A Paredes field goal from 27-yards out at 5:36 of the third made it a six-point Calgary deficit, but even that little bit of momentum came with a price, as the team lost receiver Colton Hunchak to a leg injury. The Stamps survived another turnover when Reggie Begelton had a punt bounce off his chest and scuttle away from him, into the Riders hands. Calgary’s defence didn’t allow points on the ensuing drive and Paredes added another field goal, this one from 25-yards, to make it a three-point game at the end of three quarters.

Lauther doubled his team’s lead with a 24-yard field goal at 1:46 of the fourth quarter, but the Stamps engineered a quick, six-play drive up the field. On second-and-one, Mitchell handed off to Carey for the fourth time on the drive, as he launched himself overtop of the trenches, where he might have seen the Riders’ d-line go offside under him. His second touchdown of the game tied it at 20 and Paredes’ convert gave the Stamps a 21-20 lead at 5:39.

Calgary seized ahold of the momentum at the midpoint of the quarter when Jameer Thurman lunged in front of a Fajardo pass and pulled in the defence’s fourth interception of the night, setting up Mitchell and the offence at the Riders’ 47-yard line. The Stamps settled for a field goal on the play and Paredes delivered from 47-yards to put his team up 24-20 with just over five minutes left to play.

Undeterred, Fajardo led the Riders down to Calgary’s one-yard line. After a couple of handoffs to William Powell were stuffed, Fajardo kept the ball and powered his way into the end zone. Lauther’s convert gave the Riders a three-point edge with 2:23 left on the clock.

With his team taking a punch, Mitchell wound up for a responsoe of his own, but could only get the Stamps to the Riders’ 39-yard line after Mitchell was sacked for a loss on second-down. Paredes coolly lined up a 47-yard field goal that sailed through the uprights with 37 seconds left to tie it up 27-all.

In overtime, Schaffer-Baker wasn’t able to hold onto a ball that required a tightrope act on the baseline of the end zone. Lauther’s 20-yard field goal put the Riders up three.

With the pressure of the Mosaic crowd rooting against him, Mitchell led a varied drive against the Riders, looking end zone on his first pass, then working Carey into the mix on the ground. Carey was stopped on the 17-yard line, which brought Paredes out for a 24-yard attempt that knotted the game at 30-30.

In the second OT, the Stamps survived a near-fumble from rookie receiver Luther Hakunavanhu and had to call upon Paredes once again. His 44-yarder went wide left, his third miss of the night. Morrow ran the ball out of the end zone and opened the door for a Riders’ victory.

After a pair of handoffs, Lauther made his way onto the field for a 34-yard attempt. Mosaic fell dead silent as Lauther lined it up and exploded in celebration as he hit the field goal.

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With Bergevin era over, Canadiens tap Jeff Gorton to oversee 'new vision' – Sportsnet.ca

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MONTREAL — It was a seismic shift happening right under Marc Bergevin’s feet, and under his nose too.

He knew the end of his tenure with the Montreal Canadiens was nearing. He understood that, in failing to secure a contract extension prior to the start of the season, his days as general manager were likely numbered, and he had come to terms with that reality as he watched the team that got to last summer’s Stanley Cup Final flounder towards the worst start in its 111-year history.

But Bergevin didn’t expect the cracks to form as quickly as they did on Saturday, and on Sunday he — along with assistant general manager Trevor Timmins and executive VP of public affairs and communications Paul Wilson — was pushed through them.

In a release appearing on the Canadiens’ website at 3:09 p.m. ET., the announcement came that all three had been relieved of their functions effective immediately.

Timmins had been with the team for nearly two decades, overseeing the draft for all of that time and serving as AGM since 2017. Wilson had taken on his role in 2018 after working with the Canadiens for several years as a partner in NATIONAL Public Relations. And Bergevin was brought on to lead the team he grew up cheering for nine years, six months and 26 days ago.

Jeff Gorton’s appointment as executive VP of hockey operations on Sunday marked the end for all three men in Montreal.

Just prior to Saturday’s 6-3 win for the Canadiens over the Pittsburgh Penguins, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported team owner Geoff Molson had obtained permission to speak the former New York Rangers GM and, according to a report from TVA’s Louis Jean later in the evening, that was news to Bergevin.

He had recommended long-time assistant GM Scott Mellanby for the position and both he and Mellanby were under the impression Molson was keen on moving in that direction.

But what quickly became clear to both men on Saturday evening was that the Canadiens’ owner had decided on another route.

Mellanby resigned 15 minutes into the first period of the Pittsburgh game and, as the night progressed, it became obvious Bergevin’s fate hung in the balance.

Sources informed us changes were en route as early as Sunday, and they came in the afternoon.

“On behalf of myself and the organization, I wish to thank Marc Bergevin, Trevor Timmins, and Paul Wilson for their passion and engagement towards our club over the last years,” read Molson’s statement. “Their relentless work allowed our fans to experience many memorable moments, including last summer’s playoff run that culminated with the Stanley Cup Final. We wish them all the success they deserve in the pursuit of their careers.

“I think, however, that the time has come for a leadership change within our hockey operations department that will bring a new vision and should allow our fans and partners to continue cheering for a championship team.”

The Canadiens haven’t been one since 1993, and they appear far off from becoming one — sitting in 29th place in the NHL, with just six wins in 23 games of what’s assuredly a lost season.

But Gorton’s job will be to oversee their revival, beginning with the task of recruiting — and eventually hiring — a bilingual general manager who will “bring significant hockey experience to the organization,” according to Molson.

The 53-year-old made his start in the NHL as a scout with the Boston Bruins in 1992. He then worked his way up to assistant general manager and was eventually promoted to interim GM after Mike O’Connell was fired in 2006.

Within a span of days, Gorton oversaw what’s widely considered the greatest draft haul in Bruins history — plucking out Phil Kessel, Milan Lucic and Brad Marchard and trading Andrew Raycroft for Tuukka Rask — and made waves when he signed Marc Savard and Zdeno Chara as free agents.

It was then that he caught the attention of one of the shrewdest executives in hockey history, Glen Sather, who ended up hiring Gorton to work for the Rangers immediately after he left the Bruins in 2007.

“The first time I really had anything to do with him was we tried to sign Chara in New York,” Sather told Sportsnet on Sunday. “Jeff got the inside track on him and got him to Boston, and I was left surprised at what happened.”

Sather was impressed, too.

He later brought Gorton on as a pro scout with the Rangers and quickly promoted him to assistant GM. And in July of 2015, Sather named Gorton his replacement as Rangers GM.

Despite firing his protégé from that position in May of 2021 — a move most believe Rangers owner James Dolan demanded — the 78-year-old senior advisor still believes he’s uniquely qualified for the challenge in Montreal.

“I’m not going to explain what happened (in New York),” said Sather, “but what I will say is he’s a good man and I’m very glad he got the job.

“He communicates well with the people that work with him. He treats them well and has a lot of respect for them. He’s an interesting guy. He’s very respectful, very smart, and he’s good with the numbers. He’ll do a good job in Montreal.”

A rival executive we touched base with texted, “Jeff is bright. Very bright. Thoughtful, always has a plan.”

“Jeff takes his time, takes emotion out of it, does the right thing,” the exec continued. “He’s quiet. Doesn’t love attention or media.”

Gorton’s predecessor wasn’t a big fan of that, either, but mused in his final statement as GM on Sunday, “I would never have thought, in my life, that I would be getting more visibility than the Premier (of Quebec).”

Where Bergevin and Gorton diverge is on emotional detachment. Bergevin wore his emotions on his bulging biceps throughout his time in Montreal, and they got the better of him in some negotiations that went awry but also served him well in building strong relationships with nearly everyone around him.

The team was quite successful under the 56-year-old’s watch over the first five years, making the playoffs four times and earning him nominations for GM of the Year on two occasions. But it went through major turmoil from early 2017 through the spring of 2018 and left him hanging on by a thread.

It was then that Bergevin presented a plan to reset the roster, earning Molson’s endorsement and what was expected to be job security through the end of this season.

The work done since then was commendable. Last year, with cap space to burn and the economic conditions brought on the pandemic creating an opportunity for Bergevin to strike, it earned him the most first-place votes for the 2021 Jim Gregory Award, which eventually went to New York Islanders GM Lou Lamoriello.

It was arguably Bergevin’s finest work as Canadiens GM. He traded for and signed Jake Allen to play behind Carey Price, traded for defenceman Joel Edmundson and forward Josh Anderson and signed both to long-term contracts, extended long-time Canadiens Jeff Petry and Brendan Gallagher, brought in free agents Tyler Toffoli, Michael Frolik and Corey Perry, and completed the roster by adding in Eric Staal, Jon Merrill and Erik Gustafsson prior to the trade deadline — all moves that, as he put it, “allowed us to get closer to the ultimate objective.”

“But we fell short of hoisting the Holy Grail,” Bergevin continued. “Despite this, I am proud of what we achieved as an organization. I sincerely hope this objective will be achieved sooner than later.

“Montreal is the city where I took my first skating strides and it’s also the city where I learned to lead the NHL’s winningest franchise. This city and this organization will always have a special place in my heart.”

Bergevin knew the clock was ticking on his time here but didn’t know it would run out as quickly as it did over the weekend.

Timmins was “completely shocked,” he said, when the phone rang on Sunday and Molson was on the line.

“I spent 10 years with Ottawa and 20 with Montreal and I’ve never been fired from a job in my life,” he told Sportsnet on Sunday night.

His hard work on the draft was often interfered with both by Bergevin and previous general managers who made executive decisions on the floor, and it was at least partially undone by flawed development practices that plagued the organization for years.

In the end, whatever good discoveries the 53-year-old made in beyond the first round — and there were many over the years — were offset by first-round misses.

Still, Timmins selected Cole Caufield there, 15th overall in 2019, and drafted Kaiden Guhle 16th overall in 2020, and both decisions have been widely praised. He also made several other quality picks over those years that will likely have a more positive influence on how his time with the organization will ultimately be evaluated.

Timmins’ dismissal, however, comes just months after selecting a player who asked not to be drafted in 2021.

Bergevin authorizing the decision to take Logan Mailloux with the 31st pick after the player was charged in Sweden for violating a woman’s privacy and distributing a photo of her engaged in a consensual sexual act with him, left Molson apologizing days later.

It was a PR disaster overseen by Wilson. The removal of him, Timmins and Bergevin from the organization on Sunday at least suggests Molson isn’t over it.

The owner will surely be asked about that when he meets with the media on Monday for the first time this season.

Meanwhile, Molson acknowledged — days after Mailloux was drafted — that he was aware of the decision being made and grossly underestimated how it would be received.

“It was an error in judgment,” Molson said.

It was one of many that’s been made with him at the top of the hockey operations org chart, and perhaps one that made him realize it was time to put someone of Gorton’s experience in place.

With the Canadiens likely earning a top-10 pick in the 2022 Draft, which is being held in Montreal, Gorton will lend his strong background in amateur scouting to the process.

He’ll also help ring in a new era by bringing along what’s likely to be a rookie GM and, as Sather put it, “he’ll surround that person with great people.”

“He knows everybody in hockey,” Sather added. “He’s going to find the right guy.”

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Canadiens fire GM Marc Bergevin, assistant GM Trevor Timmins; hire former Rangers GM Jeff Gorton – CBSSports.com

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After their most successful season in nearly 30 years, the Montreal Canadiens are off to a rough start to the 2021-22 season. Through 23 games, Montreal has just 14 points — tied for fifth-fewest in the league — with a 6-14-2 record. The team’s minus-29 goal differential is the worst in the Eastern Conference and second-worst in the NHL. The poor start has now led to a massive shake-up in the front office.

The club announced Sunday that that General Manager Marc Bergevin, Assistant GM Trevor Timmins, and communications chief Paul Wilson have all been let go, effective immediately. In a release, club owner Geoff Molson thanked the trio for their time in Montreal and their efforts during last year’s Stanley Cup Final run. 

“On behalf of myself and the organization, I wish to thank Marc Bergevin, Trevor Timmins, and Paul Wilson for their passion and engagement towards our Club over the last years. Their relentless work allowed our fans to experience many memorable moments, including last summer’s playoff run that culminated with the Stanley Cup Final. We wish them all the success they deserve in the pursuit of their careers. I think, however, that the time has come for a leadership change within our hockey operations department that will bring a new vision and should allow our fans and partners to continue cheering for a championship team.”  

The Canadiens also announced that former New York Rangers GM Jeff Gorton will run day-to-day hockey operations under the title of Executive Vice President, Hockey Operations.

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