Tasked with charting the Montreal Canadiens' path back to contention, Jeff Gorton's first decisions in his new role as executive vice president of hockey operations will have an undeniable impact on how long the road back to the Cup Final is — starting with choosing the franchise's next general manager.
The search itself began days after Montreal parted ways with Marc Bergevin, who'd served as general manager of the club for nine-and-a-half years, and it didn't take long for high-profile names to start emerging as candidates. Among that list, the person with the most profound and polarizing ties to the organization was Patrick Roy, who mused about the possibility of a reunion following Bergevin's departure:
"Since 1993, the team has been running in circles," Roy said on Tuesday when speaking to Le Journal de Québec. "What do they have to lose by giving me the chance to see what I can do with this club? At the same time, I understand the situation. The club is owned by Geoff Molson and he's the one pulling the strings. It's his team and at the end of the day I might not be the guy for him. I accept that."
Though Gorton is not interested in rushing the hiring process, saying that a new general manager likely wouldn't be named until after Christmas, he indicated when asked about Roy that his declaration of interest didn't go unnoticed.