Funniest thing I’ve seen in a while:
Just a little word about Laraque: I think the situation must have been pretty bad for this to happen. I mean, this decision by Gainey means that he was not only useless, but also indesirable. The Habs decided they would be better off with only 22 players in the lineup instead of 23 for the reminder of the season. Also, he’s still counting against the cap. This, coming from a team that is lacking depth to the point of dressing 2 defensemen as forwards. The fact that the team is going out of its way to get rid of him right now (even if the habs options were indeed limited with his no-move clause), and that one of the two reasons used by Gainey to justify this is that he was a distraction is a little surprising. The situation was probably worse than I thought.
I also found the other players reaction interesting. There are some interviews on Habs Inside Out. Metropolit and Gorges sounded really uncomfortable discussing how they felt about the move, and wether Laraque was a distraction or not. I guess that’s normal, because the move seemed to surprise everyone in the team, and because they couldn’t really bash Laraque or criticize Gainey’s decision, but it felt a bit awkward. I hope the move will be well received in the room. The habs certainly don’t need to instigate the feeling that they treated Laraque unfairly in their own dressing room right now.
(For the record, I definitely think it was time to pull the plug on Laraque. He seems like a good person, but he wasn’t bringing much to the team.)