Just one day after being hired, Michel Therrien’s reconstruction of the
coaching staff has begun. On Wednesday, it was announced that Assistant
Coach Randy Ladouceur and Interim Coach-turned Assistant Coach Randy Cunneyworth
had both been relieved of their duties effective immediately. No
replacements have been named yet.
Both Randy’s joined the Habs’ coaching staff prior to the start of the
2011-12 season, replacing Kirk Muller who left the club to take over as head
coach for the AHL’s Milwaukee Admirals (before moving onto Carolina). They
worked together the season before in Hamilton, leading the team to a surprising
playoff run that saw them nearly complete a comeback from down 3-0 in the
That level of success wasn’t achieved with the Canadiens as Cunneyworth led
the club to an 18-23-9 record after replacing coach Jacques Martin. Of
course, his stint as head coach will be most remembered for the backlash that
followed his hiring, one that inevitably led management and ownership to
informally place the ‘lame duck’ tag on him about a day after asking him to
assume the head coaching role. Interestingly enough, Ladouceur was the
only assistant from opening night that actually stayed on in that role for the
entire season with Cunneyworth moving to head coach while Perry Pearn was let go
early in the year.
No announcement was made regarding the status of goaltending instructor
Pierre Groulx. Therrien noted during his press conference that Carey Price
would have a say in whether or not he stays on for next season.
In other news, both TSN and TVA Sports are reporting that Martin Lapointe
will be stepping aside from his pro scouting duties with the Chicago Blackhawks
to join Montreal as Director of Player Development. He will be the second
former player to join Marc Bergevin’s staff (the other being Scott Mellanby,
hired last week as Director of Player Personnel).