How’s Pierre Gauthier feel about that Andrei Markov signing this morning?

Posted: October 16, 2011 in Uncategorized
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If you’re a Habs fan – and who isn’t? – then you’re not feeling very good this morning. The Montreal Canadiens lost in the shootout Saturday night to the exciting Colorado Avalanche and though The Gazette’s hockey scribe Pat Hickey says the loss brings the Habs record so far this season to 1-2-1, I call it – one win and three losses. I’m an old-school kind of guy. In short, it is a totally sucky start of the season.

Now after last night, there are plenty of problems we could talk about – from Carey ‘What Me Worry’ Price’s mediocre start to Scott ‘Loopy Grin’ Gomez’s all-too-predictable lack of production. But maybe the most glaring muck-up is the defense – or rather the lack there-of. Jaro Spacek is out for three weeks with what is suspected to be a rib injury, so that doesn’t help, though Spacek is hardly the rock that holds the Habs D together. The freak loss of Chris Campoli didn’t help either.

P.K. Subban has been just awful – and Saturday’s game was his worst yet. Gill hasn’t been much better. As for the new kids on the D block – Raphael Diaz, Alexei ‘No Y Please’ Emelin – the less said the better. Josh Gorges is pretty well the only blue-liner to not totally stink out the joint.

And star defenseman Andrei Markov? He’s in Florida hanging with his doctor. Yup that’s the same Markov that Canadiens GM Pierre Gauthier signed to a $17.25 million three-year contract this summer – in spite of the fact that Markov is still recovering from two consecutive knee injuries. The most recent word, from coach Jacques Martin, is that Markov is “quite a ways from recovering”.

As Arpon Basu points out, Markov has played just 60 of 190 regular-season and playoff games over the past couple of years. In other words, the guy is a huge question mark. So why did Gauthier build his whole D plan around Markov? Whatever the answer to that question, it’s not good. Potential answers – Gauthier had bad medical information; the GM has no idea what he’s doing; he’s incredibly naive. Why do I get the feeling team president Geoff Molson is mulling over this very question this morning. If I was M. Gauthier, I would be a little nervous about that.


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