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“For me you’ve got the wrong guy!”

Since then, their call-ups from Laval Rocket, Rafael Harvey-Benard and Alex Paiselli have enjoyed great moments with the big club. Former Montreal Canadiens coach Michel Therrien sees their arrival as “a breath of fresh air” for CH.

It is clear that the opportunity given to his players will not be possible if they do not inspire confidence in the coaching staff. For that to happen, it only takes one person on the team to believe in a young man.

“The most important thing is to believe in someone,” Therrien told TVA Sports before the game against the Senators.

When he was in charge of the Habs school club at the time, in Fredericton, the former coach got calls from Alain Vigneault to find out who was the best defender in the school club. And he did not hesitate to give the same name: Francis Bouillon.

He always told me he was almost your adopted son. And he said to him, “Listen, Alan. He’s my best!”. He played with his heart a lot and I knew where he was coming from. I’ve always loved the hockey player and the person.

Therrien then shared a memory about Paul Byron, whom CH claimed on waivers in October 2015.

“We were first in the National League, so there were 29 teams that were over that. I saw him arrive with his hockey pocket in Edmonton. I immediately called Mark Bergevin and said, ‘For me, you got the wrong guy!’, because he was so young. .

“The first game, we didn’t play him. The second game, in Calgary, he had three breakaways. He had a great career with the Canadiens.”

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Saint Louis example

If anyone knows the importance of encouraging and motivating the next generation, it’s Martin St. Louis. Early in his career, in the Calgary Flames organization, the current Bleu-blanc-rouge pilot was waiting his turn in the American League. Terrien thought he deserved better when he saw him in action.

“He was really the best player for the Flames in St. John’s, New Brunswick. Nothing bothered him. We were trying to intimidate him and he didn’t mind. We all know his craft.”

“He didn’t have a chance in Calgary. It took a guy like Rick Dudley in Tampa to provide a chance.”

Watch Michel Therrien’s intervention in the video above.