The Montreal Canadiens have fired their general manager, Marc Bergiveen, along with two other members of the team’s crew.
Trevor Timmins, deputy general manager, as well as Paul Wilson, senior vice president of public affairs and communications, have been relieved of their roles. Scott Mellanby, Mark Bergievin’s right-hand man since 2014, also resigned from his position on Saturday night.
“It is time for a leadership change in our hockey division that will bring a new vision so that our fans and partners can continue to nurture a team that can compete with the best in the league,” Jeff said. Molson in a statement released Sunday afternoon.
Marc Bergevin thanked supporters and organizers of Canadians in a similarly published letter. “The past few years have been rich in emotion and learning. I have been at the forefront of my journey at the helm of the organization. I will not teach you anything by telling you that this journey has not been a long, calm river and that at times we thought we were in a good episode of the TV series. Despite the pitfalls, The organization I led, with great passion, has always recovered. For me, every experience, good or bad, has made me a better leader.”
Bergevin was in his 10th season in the position with the Canadians and his contract expired at the end of that season. The last time the winds of change blew through Saint Flannel’s organization, Serge Savard, Jacques Demers, André Baudrias, and Carol Vadnais were collectively fired in 1995.
Jeff Molson will meet with the press Monday morning to assess these layoffs.
The end of the Berggen era
The first replacement was appointed by the Canadian to rebuild the team. This is Jeff Gorton who joined the organization as Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations.
The latter served as scouting manager, assistant general manager and interim general manager with the Boston Bruins, helping build the team that would eventually lift the Stanley Cup in 2011. Gorton then joined the New York Rangers, with whom he worked as explorer, player personnel manager, assistant General Manager and General Manager.
Donald Beauchamp, vice president of Canadian Communications for a quarter of a century, knows Jeff Gorton well. He speaks of him as a “good guy, a brilliant guy,” the one who “looks unanimous in the hockey world.”
So Jeff Gorton will be the next “engineer” for the Montreal Canadiens, he says. In addition to the dismissals, the organization is looking to the future. “
Fans should not expect major changes to occur on the ice, however, warns former Canadian communications director Bernard Brissett. “You can’t change a two-step and three-move hockey team. I don’t think that’s a change that can be made through transactions at this time.”
“Maybe we were all expecting the coach to jump in, but the problem is deeper in the owner’s mind,” continues Mr. Brisset. “If the problem is the coach, they will quickly find out. He will have other decisions to be made.”
Now Donald Beauchamp, Special Adviser with TACT Communications, is talking about “the end of an era” which “may have been hastened by team performance”. The Habs sit 29th in the NHL League overall standings after coming close to Grail last season by reaching the Stanley Cup Final. “No one in the organization expected to get results like this. No one.”
rumor machine racing
As soon as the dismissal of Mark Bergevin was announced, speculation began about who would be the next general manager. Jeff Molson confirmed that the latter will have to speak French, explaining that the recruitment process “starts today”.
The name Matteo Darci began to spread. This former Montreal Canadiens player works as the assistant manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Lightning’s current general manager, Julien BriseBois, could also move to Habs.
Martin Madden Jr. is also on the list of potential replacements for Mark Bergiveen. After 14 years with Anaheim Ducks, in the summer of 2020, this native of Quebec became the deputy director of this organization. His father, Martin Madden, was previously general manager of Nordiques and also worked as assistant general manager of Canadians.
Other potential candidates include Stefan Kintal, Vincent Dumbos and Patrick Roy. But the latter’s agent denied in recent interviews the suspicion that the former Canadian goalkeeper, the former star, had returned to the organization.
According to Bernard Brissett, the next general manager will be a “young woman with little experience and Gorton will show her the job”, to make a real difference in the culture. “Unless the Canadian pulls a rabbit out of his hat.”
with the Canadian press
Watch the video
“Pop culture maven. Unapologetic student. Avid introvert. Gamer. Problem solver. Tv fanatic.”