Is Michel Therrien In Over His Head?


Montreal Coach Michel Therrien was at the helm for a remarkable turnaround in Montreal, there is no doubt about that.  But he just hasn’t looked comfortable both behind the bench and in the media.  His verbal sparring with Paul MacLean has turned his focus away from the team and the task at hand, and he seems to continually be playing into MacLean’s hand.  Not that I think that was the intention of the Ottawa coach when the series started, but right from the post-game 1 “disrespect” rant, nothing has gone right for Therrien.

May 3, 2013; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens head coach Michel Therrien talks to forward Alex Galchenyuk (27) and Brendan Gallagher (11) and Jeff Halpern (24) during the first period of game two of the first round of the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

MacLean, like the Senators, have made the best of the counter-punching that they have done, both on and off the ice.  Whether it be line brawls or press conferences, almost everything has gone right for the Senators, and wrong for the Canadiens.

The Canadiens now have to win three straight against the Senators, which is not an easy task against a team that there is very little to choose between.  Add to that the injury woes that the Canadiens are now facing (Carey Price, Brian Gionta, Ryan White) and taking 3 in a row seems pretty daunting, no matter what P.K. Subban might say.

If he could go back in time, I think Therrien might just want to button his lips at that post-game 1 press conference.  MacLean had said his piece and the rebuttal from Therrien just reeked of desperation already.  That rant fuelled the fire, had zero effect on the Senators and the Habs have been playing catch-up ever since. If the saying is true that a team takes on the personality of their head coach, then I would much prefer to be in the Senators corner rather than the Habs.