You know hockey is back when RDS tells you that they'll be live from Laval-sur-le-Lac from 7 AM to cover the Habs' annual golf tournament. Year in, year out, this is when the team members are thrown in the media deep end and asked variation of the same questions. There will always be click bait out there like Brendan Kelly telling you that Carey Price said he would seek greener pastures if the Habs missed the playoffs but don't worry, he did not say that. Without further delay, here are the main points discussed today.
Carey Price: In short, Carey Price wants to win and moving forward he wants the best opportunity to win. He also believes that the Canadiens have what is needed to surprise a lot of people. Price also confirmed that he's been training on-ice in BC for over a month and that he's had a great and busy summer with his family.
Shea Weber: The captain is glad to have been able to get a full summer of training and doesn't shy away from saying that yes his training regimen has changed somewhat with the years. He's older and he cannot throw the weight around as much as he used to and is aware that the league is getting younger and faster. Interestingly, Weber also said that Domi's comments re playing in Montreal were spot on, before remembering the little side dig at Toronto that number 13 included and saying he might have went a little overboard...Some things never change, the captain is always very careful with his words.
Claude Julien: The head coach is aware that with 15 forwards signed to NHL contracts, there will be a lot of decisions to be made and that's the way he likes it. Asked about the power play, he stated that he believed that the man-advantage was headed the right way towards the end of the season and that he hopes that it will pick-up where it left off. He was of course asked about the possibility of seeing Suzuki and Poehling making the team out of training camp and said that they would have to do what Kotkaniemi did last season. Should they deserve a shot, the head coach is ready to make room for them. The coach also said that it was too early to discuss the possibility of seeing Max Domi on the wing or Suzuki at centre or right wing, in a nutshell, the man is erring on the side of caution.
Brendan Gallagher: The pint sized warrior is ready and optimistic for the season, he believes that the group is ready to take another step forward this year. He adds that having Shea Weber from the start of the season makes a huge difference.
Max Domi: Not unlike Gallagher, Domi is optimistic coming into the season and believes that last season was a solid base to build on. He mentions that all the new guys who were brought in are aware that Montreal is a great place to play and that they're excited about getting to wear the jersey.
Marc Bergevin: The GM confirmed that he had made a contract offer to Jake Gardiner but that the left handed blueliner chose to go another way. He said that he doesn't feel like he was played in the Aho file and that he did try his best to improve his team. Once again, he did mention the parity in the league and the fact that making the playoffs is the main objective but that it's hard to know how the dice will fall. When asked how he felt about Price's comments about the need to win sooner rather than later, he said that he believed that Price had plenty of good years left ahead of him (while mentioning that Price would probably laugh at that comment). Here's what he had to say about Max Domi's contract situation:
Charles Hudon: the Quebecer says that he's eager to start with a clean slate and shed 17 pounds this summer we should therefore see a leaner and faster Hudon. Will that be enough to make the team? Time will tell I guess...
So, as you can see, nothing groundbreaking was said at this event and the boys all know what is expected of them on and off the ice. The Canadiens do have a way of making sure that nobody says anything controversial and don't expect that to change, ever. Nevertheless, we can all be glad that this event is now in the books and we can finally smell the new season coming!