Former Habs coach Therrien calls job ‘gratifying’ but also ‘thankless task’

Therrien gracious in first comments since firing

MONTREAL — Two days after being fired by the Montreal Canadiens, Michel Therrien says being an NHL coach is a tough job that is “gratifying on many levels but it can also quickly become a thankless task.”

In a statement released Thursday, Therrien said he understood why general manager Marc Bergevin made the decision to let him go and bring in Claude Julien.

“When a team is experiencing difficulties, any head coach knows his job is on the line,” Therrien said. “I understand and accept this reality.”

After starting the season 13-1-1, Montreal had hit a tough patch, going 2-6-1 over its last nine games.

Therrien, who struck a gracious tone in the statement, wished his successor the best.

“I leave with my head held high: I am very proud of the work accomplished over the past five years,” he said. “The current team can aspire to great honours, and I wish my colleague Claude Julien every success in the future.”

Julien was fired by the Boston Bruins last week.

Therrien was in his second stint as Canadiens coach. He originally held the post from 2000 to 2003 before being replaced by Julien. He returned behind Montreal’s bench for the 2012-13 season but the club missed the playoffs last year.

He went on to thank the Canadiens organization, Bergevin and owner Geoff Molson, adding that his dismissal in no way changes “my perception of the team and its management.”

Finally, he thanked the fans in Montreal and across Quebec and “the many players whom I had the privilege of coaching.”

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Update: Two West Kelowna homes gutted by fire

Family cat saved by firefighters

Ash falling in the Okanagan

Reports on social media of ashes on cars around the Okanagan

Temporary smoke relief in sight for Kelowna

Kelowna is expected to see a break in smoke until tomorrow afternoon

Kelowna developer warns home buyers to look at more than the price tag

Kelowna developer Jeffrey Anderson wants first-time homeowners to look at more than the price tag.

Canadian Armed Forces assist with mop-up of fire near West Kelowna

100 Armed Forces members are helping BC Wildfire crews with the Gottfriedson Mountain fire

B.C. wildfires 2018: Hazy skies impacting crews in spotting new fires

18,000 people are on an evacuation alert, with 3,000 homes under an evacuation order

Snowy Mountain fire travelling away from communities

The Snowy Mountain fire near Keremeos remains at 13,359 hectares in size

Minister optimistic after 2 days of Columbia River Treaty negotiations

Canadian and U.S. officials met in Nelson Wednesday and Thursday to discuss future of the treaty

Man dies in B.C. police cell while awaiting court hearing

An independent investigation is underway after a man died while in Penticton police custody Aug. 16

RCMP appeal for tips, dashcam footage in German tourist shooting west of Calgary

The Durango crashed into the ditch after the shooting near the Goodstoney Rodeo Centre

2 nurses attacked at B.C. psych hospital, union calls for in-unit security

PHSA says that in-unit guards would do more harm than good

Former Shuswap optician won’t be jailed for sexually assaulting minor

Kenneth Pilkington sentenced to 24 months’ probation for offence three decades ago

Osland to make LPGA Tour debut

Kelowna’s Megan Osland has earned an exemption into next week’s CP Women’s Open in Regina.

Red Cross now accepting donations for those impacted by B.C. wildfires

The Canadian Red Cross is asking for help now and in the weeks and months ahead.

Most Read