I used to have a soft spot for Vincent Lecavalier…..

Posted: July 2, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

As is so often the case, Grandmaster Flash said it best.

“It’s all about money/Ain’t a damn thing funny.”

The Master penned those wise words in one of the first rap hits back in the late ’70s but he could’ve just as easily been talking about Vincent Lecavalier in 2013. My Cousin Vinnie could’ve been a hero. He could’ve come back to his hometown and played for le bleu-blanc-et-rouge, bringing some veteran smarts, a Cup ring, face-off savoir-faire and a scoring touch to a young team desperately in need of all of those things.

He also could’ve been the first-line centre on a team that has neither a first nor a second-line centre. But instead Lecavalier followed the money, all the way to Philadelphia, where he’s going to get U.S.$22.5 million over the next five years.

Montreal was never going to pay him that kind of money. Obviously we don’t know what kind of offer Habs GM Marc Bergevin made but Richard Labbé from La Presse tweeted that Montreal was amongst the last three teams still in talks with Vinnie.

Phillie obviously offered more money and more years. And I’m glad that Bergevin didn’t make that kind of deal. That would’ve been a dumb deal for the Canadiens. D-U-M-B (as the Ramones put it so memorably).

But Lecavalier should’ve come to play in Montreal for less money and less years. The big centreman is going to be paid some $30 million by the Tampa Bay Lightning over the next 14 years so I’m thinking he’ll be able to afford the kids’ university fees.

So why not play for less in Montreal and maybe in three years be there when they bring the Cup back to its rightful home.

No instead Vinnie goes for the dough. And heads to a team that, as Mathias Brunet points out in an excellent blog, finished 20th last season, just dumped their starting goalie and bought out Daniel Brière. Have a great time with the Broadstreet Bullies pal.

But don’t look for any respect from your former Montreal fans. We get the message. You don’t want to play in Montreal.

Lecavalier tells RDS’s Renaud Lavoie rather mysteriously that it was “external factors” that stopped him from signing with Montreal. What does that mean? Is he talking about the tax rates here? So we have to finance our crumbling hospitals but not Vinnie?

Look this would’ve been a terrible deal for Montreal to sign. But Lecavalier should’ve played for less here. And all Habs fans today should be wondering why francophone NHL stars are so reluctant to play in Montreal.


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