Surprise statement from Jeff Gorton on free agency and the Canadiens

Aaron Itovitch
April 23, 2024  (10:27)

Montreal Canadiens vice president of hockey operations Jeff Gorton
Photo credit: NY Post

Over recent years, we've observed that the Montreal Canadiens have never really been a preferred option for players testing the free agent market.

Whether it's due to the high tax rate in Quebec, the team's disappointing performances, or even the intensity of media coverage, several players have refused to join the Bleu-Blanc-Rouge.
Quietly, this reality significantly affects the Tricolore, as the free agent market is an important aspect of adding talented players to the roster, even though Kent Hughes and Jeff Gorton have somewhat neglected this option in recent summers.
However, knowing that the rebuilding process is progressing and soon coming to an end, it wouldn't be surprising if the team's leaders are curious to reach out to some free agents this summer, or even next summer, to acquire a top forward who can join the top two lines of Martin St-Louis.
In this regard, the Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations for the Montreal Canadiens, Jeff Gorton, made a very interesting statement during his end-of-season review. According to him, a significant change is currently happening, mentioning that more and more players would like to join the organization.
"I think Montreal will be a place where players will want to play. I'm already hearing echoes of this sort, and it has a lot to do with Martin St-Louis." - Jeff Gorton

That's interesting!
According to what he has heard, the Montreal market is no longer on the "blacklist" as it was before. Moreover, he thinks that hiring Martin St-Louis plays a significant role in this change, as players across the league notice how much the current roster players love playing under the head coach's guidance.
After all, if I had the choice between aligning with a team whose head coach maintains an excellent relationship with his players or with a dictator like John Tortorella who constantly wants to impose his law, the choice would be easy.
Additionally, free agents are not blind; they are aware of the rebuilding process initiated by the management and know well that the team is full of talented young players, foreseeing a very promising future. Furthermore, the new culture established within the Tricolore, that of a united team whose sole and unique goal is to win games, would interest many players.
It will therefore be fascinating to see the moves that Kent Hughes and Jeff Gorton wish to make on July 1st next year, but don't be surprised if they try to attract a quality forward like Steven Stamkos, Sam Reinhart, or even Jake Guentzel.
Credit Habsolumentfan:
Montréal est en train de devenir un endroit où les joueurs veulent venir
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Surprise statement from Jeff Gorton on free agency and the Canadiens

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