The collapse of the Montreal Canadiens is worse than anyone can even make fun of anymore.
They aren’t just stumbling, they’re tumbling…from the Penthouse to the outhouse. Most are saying the first one through the door should be head coach Michel Therrien.
Would that really solve the problem? Don’t the players have to just be better? Or digging even deeper, don’t they just need better players?
I do think they need a new identity in Montreal. There’s a staleness to the team, a predictability that makes them painful to watch. Yet while a player rebuild is in order, they should still be a playoff team.
The immediate issue isn’t the Carey Price injury. Goaltending has been good enough. The players look bad, sure, but in this case that has almost everything to do with how they’re being used.
There’s been no effective overhaul of a power play that hasn’t worked in three years. There’s been no consistency in Galchenyuk’s position so he doesn’t have a real role. There’s been no increased opportunity and purpose for the third and fourth liners even though the top guys are stuck in quicksand. There’s been no accountability on PK Subban who is a great player that’s been making some horrible decisions over the last two months. He’s trying to do too much on his own and making it harder on everyone else, and there’s no measured effort to reel him in.
The panic is evident all over the ice, and the lack of control and direction comes from one place: the middle of the bench. Therrien isn’t a bad coach by any means and I actually don’t even think he was a factor in the intuition of the collapse. But he seems to have lost the players a while ago and has no idea what to do about it.
Montreal needs to start from scratch and be issued a new directive. They just need a new boss to deliver it.