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Why Greg Vanney decided to step away from Toronto FC and what's next – MLSsoccer.com

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Sitting for his first (virtual) press conference no longer part of the Toronto FC organization he had been with since 2013, Greg Vanney warned he might not get through his long list of thank-yous without getting emotional. 

He almost made it.

Around the eighth minute of what would be 10 minutes of heartfelt thank-yous, Vanney got to thanking his players and people at the club. There was a palpable silence— you could feel the lump in his throat as he tried to gather himself to continue. He took a few seconds.

Then Vanney leaned back, one last push to collect himself, which revealed he was wearing a Toronto FC warm-up jacket, the club crest over his heart, including the star above the logo to signify their MLS Cup triumph in 2017.

“I’ll never forget this journey,” Vanney said. “There’s so many people who have meant so much to me, are so important to me. Much will be written about the successes and failures, but what means most to me are people at the club I’ve meant and the experiences we’ve had together. That’s what you never forget.”

The successes outweigh the failures.

Toronto have been one of the best teams in MLS under Vanney after enduring a very difficult start to life in MLS, failing to make the playoffs in each of their first eight seasons. Vanney leaves a club that won a historic treble in 2017 with MLS Cup, the Supporters’ Shield and Canadian Championship. TFC have been to a further two MLS Cup finals as well as a Concacaf Champions League final, falling in penalties to Chivas, nearly becoming the first MLS club to win that trophy. Vanney lists failing to win the CCL as his biggest regret.

“One of the most important decisions I made of my career is that I believed in Greg Vanney and Tim Bezbatchenko at the time as general manager that they had what it took to bring this team to new heights,” club president Bill Manning said. “He more than paid back that decision with a number of trophies.”

Greg Vanney departs Toronto FC as the most successful coach in club history. | USA Today Sports

The news came as a big jolt to the MLS community when Toronto announced Vanney would be stepping away. His reign in Toronto was the third-longest active tenure in the league and reports had suggested as recently as October that a contract extension was essentially done, just needing signatures.

Those signatures never came. Why? 

“This was a difficult decision, one that I processed for an entire difficult year and came to a conclusion that it’s the right time for myself and my family to move forward and take a different step,” Vanney said. “This profession is about a journey, and in this journey, we have different experiences. I’ve taken every ounce of what I can from this experience and I think it’s time for myself and my family to move on.”

The decision had nothing to do with finances or other contract details. 

“We tried to show Greg how much we valued him and wanted him to continue as head coach. … As the season wound down to a close, we did ask Greg for a decision,” Manning said. “We felt we couldn’t go further into the offseason without knowing what position we’d be in with our head coach.”

“Along the way, we had a lot of incredible memories and did a lot of incredible things,” Vanney added. “The club is destined to keep doing that. It’s time for somebody else to take that.”

For the first time in close to a decade, Vanney and Toronto will go their separate ways for the future. The club are beginning their search for a head coach while Vanney ponders what’s next. 

“I’m a builder, I like to build things,” Vanney said. “I like projects. This club is in a really good place, there’s not a lot of building to do. This club is positioned to be great.”

Vanney doesn’t have a timeline for when he’ll put his hardhat on and get back to building. A lot of speculation has linked him with the vacant LA Galaxy job, considering he spent seven seasons with the club during his playing career and also went to nearby UCLA for college. 

“I do need to catch my breath and regroup a bit, but anyone who knows me, knows I don’t sit still very well,” Vanney said. “It won’t be a long thing.”



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Canadiens unable to get centre Pierre-Luc Dubois in a trade – Montreal Gazette

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Some Canadiens fans might have had a sleepness night Friday — along with GM Marc Bergevin — hoping the team could acquire centre Pierre-Luc Dubois from the Columbus Blue Jackets.

They were left disappointed Saturday morning when news broke that the Blue Jackets had dealt the Ste-Agathe-des-Monts native to the Winnipeg Jets, along with a third-round pick at the 2022 NHL Draft, in exchange for right-winger Patrik Laine and centre Jack Roslovic.

Late Friday night, TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun tweeted that trade talks were heating up for Dubois and that the Canadiens, Jets and Anaheim Ducks were believed to be the front-runners. Aaron Portzline, who covers the Blue Jackets for The Athletic, then tweeted at 10:55 p.m. “go to bed” adding it was unlikely a deal would be competed Friday night but “Saturday could be a bid day, though.”

It was a big day for the Blue Jackets and the Jets, but not the Canadiens. The price for the 22-year-old Dubois was obviously too high for Bergevin and with the Canadiens off to a 3-0-2 start this season there are Canadiens fans who will be happy he didn’t make a deal. You have to think Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen would have wanted young centre Nick Suzuki or Jesperi Kotkaniemi, plus more, in exchange for Dubois. Bergevin also would have had to make moves to fit Dubois’s $5-million salary under the NHL salary cap, which the Canadiens are already up against. According to CapFriendly.com, the Canadiens had $49,786 of salary-cap space on Saturday morning.

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Trade grades: Pierre-Luc Dubois and Patrik Laine swap teams – ESPN

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We’ve got our first blockbuster trade of the 2021 NHL season, as the Columbus Blue Jackets have sent disgruntled center Pierre-Luc Dubois along with a 2022 third-round pick to the Winnipeg Jets in exchange for disgruntled winger Patrik Laine and forward Jack Roslovic.

Laine and Dubois arrived on the NHL radar simultaneously, as the No. 2 and No. 3 picks, respectively, in the 2016 NHL draft. Heading into this season, there were murmurs that both were unhappy with their current situation. Now, they each get a fresh start where the other began his NHL career.

How did both GMs do in this swap of stars? Here are our grades for the deal.

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Montreal Canadiens recall Corey Perry from taxi squad

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The Montreal Canadiens have announced the recall of Corey Perry from the taxi squad, making the winger available for Saturday night’s game against the Vancouver Canucks.

Perry’s recall was necessary because of the concussion that Joel Armia suffered on Thursday night. Perry will likely slot into Armia’s position on the third line with Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Tyler Toffoli.

This will be Perry’s NHL debut with the Montreal Canadiens. The veteran winger signed a 1-year $750,000 contract during the offseason after tallying 21 points in 56 games with the Dallas Stars the previous season.

The absence of additional recalls likely means that Paul Byron will be in the lineup or — at the very least — that the team is comfortable placing Victor Mete in the lineup. This move allows the team to evaluate the cap situation and their injury situation during the upcoming four-day break prior to their home opener on Thursday.

Perry can stay on the NHL roster for 30 days or play 10 games without requiring waivers to return to the taxi squad.

Source:- Habs Eyes on the Prize

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