Former Canadiens greats, and other dignitaries admire the new Centennial Monument outside the Bell Centre. Photo – Monteal Gazette
While the 2009-10 edition of the Montreal Canadiens were practicing in Edmonton, in preparation for Saturday’s game against the Oilers, former Habs legends gathered at the Bell Centre for a special ceremony.
The City of Montreal made it official, on Friday afternoon, that a street along the location of the Bell Centre will now be known as avenue des Canadiens-de-Montréal.
The renaming of the street applies only to the section of De La Gauchetière West between de la Montagne and Peel streets.
A new sign was placed on the corner of the De La Gauchetière and de la Montagne streets.
A new monument, a tribute to the 761 players who wore a Canadiens jersey for the team’s first 100 seasons, was also unveiled at the centre of the Canadiens’ Centennial Plaza.
The the monument features Canadiens players awarded NHL individual honors during their career, the team’s annual record since the it’s first season (1909-1910) and is completed with a list of all general managers and head coaches in team history.
Pierre Boivin, President and CEO of the Club de hockey Canadien, along with Gérald Tremblay, Mayor of the City of Montreal, presided over the ceremony.
Montreal Canadiens Ambassadors Jean Béliveau, Yvan Cournoyer, Guy Lafleur and Réjean Houle were also in attendance, as were former Canadiens Elmer Lach, Dickie Moore, Phil Goyette, Don Johns, Jean-Guy Morissette and Yvon Lambert.
Lafleur was impressed to see even the single-game players honored by the Canadiens and that two of those players, Johns and Morissette, were invited to attend Friday’s ceremony.
"We always talk about the dynasties and things like that, but we're celebrating the 100th anniversary and everybody's part of it," he said.
"They proved it today by having guys here who only played one game with the team. I'm very happy about that."
A photo gallery, from the Montreal Gazette, can be found here.
A video montage of the ceremony, from canadiens.com is seen below.
Beliveau OK without a Habs captain: Habs Hall-of-Famer Jean Beliveau feels there is not need to hurry to find the team’s next captain.
"Since we have so many new players, give the organization a chance to know them better," Beliveau said. "There's nothing wrong starting with three alternate captains.
"Even if they have to wait until Christmas, by that time they should know. It's not only what they do on the ice, but it's also the way they face situations (that shows if ) they have the ability to wear the C."
Laraque’s new PSA for PETA: The Canadiens heavyweight has a new announcement for PETA. Warning: The content is a little graphic.
Ironic that I had a craving for a vegetarian dish before I read about this.
What’s everyone else doing??
Like the Canadiens this season, All Habs has brought some new faces to their writers to their team.
Robert at Habs Eyes on the Prize is always putting together numbers and finding new stories.
First up, he looks at the Canadiens inefficiency to rebound after a loss in which their opponents score six goals or more, a dismal 13-18-2 since 2001.
He also dug up a feature on ,YouTube, with Todd Denault, author of the upcoming biography Jacques Plante: The Man Behind the Mask.
Lions in Winter wonders if the acquisition of Marc-Andre Bergeron is the solution to the current hole in the Canadiens defense.
CJAD’s Rick Moffat talks on the comparison of a young Carey Price to a young Roberto Luongo and a recount from an ex-Hab on his own experiences after witnessing the Canadiens bag skate on Thursday.