10 mai 2012

TLMEP interview with Marc Bergevin

The show was recorded on Thursday May 3rd, 24 hours after Marc Bergevin was announced as the new General Manager and Vice-President of Hockey Operations for The Montreal Canadiens.
MB left Quebec 30 years ago and now he’s back – did he come home or get traded yet again? MB says he’s come home.
MB has performed a lot of roles in hockey: defenceman, scout, assistant coach, director of player personel and assistant GM, to name a few. Guy wonders if there’s anything MB hasn’t done? Drive the Zamboni would be the answer. Which, he points out, is also something Patrick Roy has likely never done. MB is asked if he’ll meet Saint Patrick (that’s what Quebecois call Patrick Roy. If ever you needed more reasons why the Montreal Canadiens are considered more a religion than a hockey team) and the short is answer is he’s not sure – apparently the people that would advise him in the Saint-Patrick case aren’t here at the moment to help him answer that question. Or decide, I suppose.
Asked if the Habs are amochés (Bruised and beaten) or pas trop maganés (not too worse for wear) he responds they’re amochés but that the right elements are in place.
Did MB ever dream of being part of the organisation? As a player, he held Montreal in a class apart from most other teams in the league. He would have loved to play for them but never considered himself good enough.
Journalists in Montreal were a bit of a surprise for MB – he never expected that many. Just that morning he was being honked at in the street even!
Asked about scouting in Quebec, he quickly responded: If you’re Quebecois, you can play with us.
MB great qualities as a hockey player? Team first kinda fella. He’ll be the same in this new role.
MB is quite the practical joker and he explains one where he couldn’t sleep and it was 6am, so he changed the clocks in the room to 8am, woke up his roommate to tell him they were late. They scrambled to get ready and by the time they were downstairs, panicky roommate and all, they were fine.
At this point Charles Lafortune arrives to participate – says MB if fun and it’s too boring to stay back there waiting – he wants to participate right away. And so he asks what MB will do to make it more fun in the organization – especially considering that M. Gauthier was more like Urgel Bourgie. MB answer quite nice – “winning is fun.”
Asked about the family situation MB confirms his kids (3 of ‘em between 11 and 14, I think) were not terribly pleased but as a family man and dad, it’s his job to take care of them so he’ll do what he needs to do.
After talking about the devotion his parents showed to his hockey love he’s asked about how he’d attract free agent players to Montreal: This is the capital of hockey, this is where the fans are the most passionate. There is no better place to play.
Large contracts can be a good idea – depending on the player. Chicago has 3 large contracts, they’re working out ok. What about Carey Price? Would you sign him to a 10-year deal? Marc says we’ll see.
Charles asks about Russian players and their rep – Yeah, they’re a bit of a risk because of the attractiveness of the KHL and the lack of transfer agreement (see Radulov saga in Nashville). (MB turns and give Charles a friendly smack while laughing – you can tell he’s pretty comfortable about the whole dilly-o, says he likes it here!)
MB talks a bit about Price and Subban, quite honestly in fact, and Guy finds this surprising. MB response is golden: “you ask me questions, I answer ‘em” as if to say, what’s the problem? Is there a problem here? I don’t see a problem. Love the guy.
Asked about the decisions regarding Radulov and Kostitsyn in Nashville – he would support the coach’s decisions.
MB thinks fights can be a problem despite there needing a place to “reglé nos comptes” – the goon era is over though (he’s had 55 or 56 fights in his career.)
Dany presents his card: With the great number of teams you’ve worked for, you’d have the right to have the Habs tattooed not over your heart but on your bottom.

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