Scandal in Montreal: Canadiens Involved in Crime?

Francois GendronSenior Writer IFebruary 20, 2009

This morning, Montreal's La Presse newspaper had a huge scoop about three players from the Montreal Canadiens.

According to La Presse, Sergei Kostitsyn, his brother Andrei Kostitsyn and defense men Roman Hamrlik made business with Pasquale Mangiola, a member of an international criminal organization who was busted a few weeks ago by the police.

As the news is still extremely fresh, we do not possess all the details on how, where, when and how much were these transactions. A lot more details will be clarified as time will pass.

As for the Montreal Canadiens organization itself, a press conference was scheduled today, giving the chance to the Canadiens to express their surprise and concerns.

The General Manager, Bob Gainey, said that every time he hears something of this nature about his players he passes the information to the team's security department and more particularly Louis Laframboise.

Gainey also said that the 18-22 generation faces different problems and situations and Gainey also confessed that he doesn't completely understand this generation.

Head coach Guy Carbonneau said that he was deceived and concerned. Carbonneau confessed that he maybe gave a little too much rope to his players with the result that some of them hung themselves with it. He also said that he will reel in the rope and keep it a lot tighter.

These reactions from the team GM and head coach are not surprising. The only thing surprising enough is the way that these youngsters won their bosses' confidence. A little more focus and more productive searches would've uncovered this story a lot earlier.

As for myself, I will not blame the young Kostitsyn brothers for bonding with criminals. I am blaming the organization. The team president Pierre Boivin, GM Bob Gainey and head coach Guy Carbonneau are to blame. Those three mens did not protect their young prospects from criminals and worse of all, they did not have a clue! I call this incompetence.

We will follow this story as more will be uncovered.

(Picture: Andrei and Sergei Kostitsyn, Getty Images.)