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Practice Notes and Reactions to Gervais' Book

November 21, 2022, 5:15 PM ET [151 Comments]
Karine Hains
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Follow me @KarineHains for all updates about the Montreal Canadiens and women's hockey

As expected, after he didn’t play at all during the 3rd period of Saturday’s game, Mike Hoffman wasn’t at practice as he’s being evaluated for a lower body injury. Meanwhile, Joel Armia was back on the ice with his teammates, but he was still wearing a no contact jersey.

Hoffman’s absence left a whole on the second line alongside Christian Dvorak and Brendan Gallagher and it was Juraj Slafkovsky who skated there this morning. Should Hoffman miss some time, he really does look like the youngster will get an opportunity to play a bigger role and get more quality minutes on the ice. As for Joel Armia, he was slotted on the 4th line with Pezzetta and Evans but it remains to be seen if he’ll be cleared to play tomorrow.

On the blue line, the pairings had once again changed with Xhekaj being back with Wideman and Harris with his regular partner Kovacevic. It would make sense for Xhekaj to skip a turn since both Kovacevic and Harris have done it before. The other two pairings remained unchanged as Guhle-Savard have been together since day one and it is expected that Matheson-Edmundson will eventually get used to each other, but that will of course take time.

After practice, Nick Suzuki was asked about Pierre Gervais’ book which is hitting the shelves today and in which he’s critical of both Dominique Ducharme and Marc Begevin. The captain wasn’t phased by the question, clearly he was expecting the subject to come up and said that all of the players loved Gervais and he was nothing but great with them, he then added that he respected both Ducharme and Bergevin and that they were good to him.

Brendan Gallagher was also asked what he thought of Gervais breaking the “locker-room” code and he said: “I don’t know that there is a code to be honest. I mean I used to love coming to the rink and speaking with Gerv, he had so many stories and he could talk”. It seems that the players are not looking to cast the first stone at the former equipment manager and I for one am glad that’s the case.

I’ve ordered my copy of the book and I’ll be reading and reviewing it as soon as possible. Unfortunately, Mathias Brunet, who wrote it alongside Gervais has confirmed that it will not be translated but I’ll do my best to relay as much information to the English-speaking fans as possible. From what we’ve seen so far in the media, Gervais speaks in glowing terms of Nick Suzuki, Saku Koivu and Shea Weber, but he’s no fan of Max Pacioretty, Dominique Ducharme and Marc Bergevin. I’m really looking forward to reading that one…

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