It was thought earlier this season that interim Montreal Canadiens coach Randy Cunneyworth would only bench boss the remainder of the season after the removal of Jacques Martin to buy time for Patrick Roy to settle in over the summer as the next Habs coach.
It turns out, it’s just not that simple.
Yes, Roy has a future with the Canadiens. And, yes, the Francophone fans would adore him in any way with the organization, but especially on the bench.
However, it may do a Steve Yzerman, and go to the front office.
Sources say that Roy will take part in rebuilding the franchise after a dismal year by accepting a general manager position.
Pierre Gauthier has been involved in French-Canadian hockey in the NHL since scouting for them in 1981 and into the 90s.
A removal of Gauthier makes perfect sense. Montreal fans were outraged when Cunneyworth was named interim coach, because of his inability to speak French. By removing Gauthier, you remove the problem (Cunneyworth) and the source itself.
Roy would ultimately be obligated to hire a new bench boss. And it’d be someone more respected in the Francophone community.
That person would be Bob Hartley, a personal friend of Roy, who coached the Colorado Avalanche from 1998-2003.
Hartley is currently coaching the ZSC Lions of Switzerland’s National League A.
Meanwhile, Roy has been an impressive bench boss in the “Q” league of the QMJHL, leading the Quebec Ramparts to a 43-18-7 record. His successful major junior coaching season brought on early rumors of Roy coaching the Habs.
However, the rumor of a Roy-Hartley reunion in Montreal stems from Sean Simpsons of Team 1200 radio in Ottawa. The Sun picked up the story.