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I will always respect Martin for that

I will always respect Martin for that

I don't know what came over me, but I admit I was impatient with the Canadians. But this is not my habit. I think by having me talk about the process, about success that can't be measured by wins, and having me say that the team was playing their best hockey of the season in the middle of a five-game losing streak, I got it over with.

But the last three CH matches have convinced me to be patient again, especially since the existing group knows it better than me (we all knew it 😉) and they deserve our trust.

Bottom of the barrel in Nashville

Last year, the Canadiens had a disastrous December (3-9-3) culminating in a 6-3 loss in Nashville on January 3. It was heavy…it was hell.

On the morning of the match, we waited with our fellow journalists near the locker room. I don't remember if it was Charles or Chantal who was there for media relations, but we agreed that we didn't need to talk to Martin. He had a lot on his shoulders and was very available in the earlier days. The coach overheard the conversation and intervened. He said something like: “It's not true that I'm going to hide. If anyone has a question, I'll answer it.”

Finally, he gave a lavish press conference. It was his way of telling his comrades that they should never be shy and that he was ready to bear the heat of the moment. I will always respect Martin St. Louis for doing that. The cameras were turned off even though they were not for show. He was just Real Martin St. Louis.

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Before and after Nashville

Unfortunately for him and his gang they lost that evening (6-3) and that was the bottom of the barrel. The team was enjoying a day off after such a long trip. Everyone except the coaches. St. Louis, Litosky, Burroughs, Robidas, and Raymond urgently banded together to find a solution to the fact that nothing was working.

Fast forward for this year and “After Nashville.” I know it's only three games, but the shows in Florida, Tampa Bay and Nashville… I say wow! I'm seeing fewer passengers and one proof of that is Josh Anderson's fight.

I have always found that there is great risk in awarding large contracts to energy guys. The reason is simple: it's much less tempting to get into traffic and eat popsicles when your future and the future of the next 15-20 generations of your lineage is assured.

I love Josh, but I have to admit his energy and enthusiasm left me feeling lacking at times this season. But his match yesterday and the team's match in general show me that we still have to be patient… I'm impressed. I have become patient again.