Why did the Canadiens replace Dominique Ducharme with Martin St. Louis and fire Dominique Ducharme?

The Canadiens underwent a coaching transition, and their new leader is an unexpected choice.

Why did the Canadiens replace Dominique Ducharme with Martin St. Louis and fire Dominique Ducharme?

On Wednesday, the team said that Dominique Ducharme had been fired. He was appointed to the position less then a year ago. The general manager Kent Hughes announced hours later that Martin St. Louis, Hockey Hall of Famer, had been hired as interim coach.

We would like to thank Dominique for all his efforts and contributions to Montreal Canadiens. "At this point in the season we felt it was best for the club to make changes," Hughes stated in a statement.

Ducharme was fired just days after the Canadiens lost a 7-1 to the Devils. With an 8-30-7 record, the team is last in Atlantic Division. The team has conceded 33 goals in the last five games, and lost 13 of its 14 previous games.

Ducharme was initially hired as an interim coach on February 24, 2021. He signed a three year contract with Montreal in July last year to become a full-time coach. Pierre LeBrun, the Athletic's reporter, reports that the agreement was worth $1.75million per season. LeBrun also noted that former coach Claude Julien is being paid a $5 million salary until June 30.

Martin St. Louis was hired by the Canadiens as an interim coach.

Montreal is taking a chance upon St. Louis, who doesn't have any previous coaching experience. Since losing to the Lightning last year's Stanley Cup Final in five games, the team has lost its rhythm.

"We are very pleased to welcome Martin to our Canadiens team," stated Hughes. "We are adding an outstanding hockey player, but we also have Martin. His competitive qualities are well-known by everyone who has met him." Hughes added.

St. Louis will have a chance to make a difference for the team, but his future in Montreal is uncertain Reports state that the Canadiens plan for him to be the head coach for the rest of the regular season before reassessing the situation.
In 2019, the Blue Jackets hired him as a special-teams consultant.
After playing 16 seasons in the NHL with the Lightning, Flames, and Rangers, he was inducted into Hockey Hall of Fame 2018. He was instrumental in bringing Tampa Bay to the Stanley Cup, and he also won the Hart Trophy in 2004. He was a Quebec native who won a gold medal for Canada at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.


 

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