Canadians fire Marc Bergevin, Trevor Timmins and vice-president Paul Wilson

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Former New York Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton has been named the new executive vice president of hockey operations for the Canadiens.

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Marc Bergevin is no longer general manager of the Canadiens.

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Trevor Timmins is no longer Assistant Managing Director and Paul Wilson is no longer Senior Vice President, Public Affairs and Communications.

Canadiens owner / president Geoff Molson said in a statement Sunday afternoon that all three “have been relieved of their duties effective now.”

Molson also announced that “to ensure the continuity of daily hockey operations during this process,” Jeff Gorton has been hired as executive vice president of hockey operations. Gorton served as the New York Rangers general manager from 2015 to 2021 after spending four seasons as an assistant general manager. Gorton was fired by the Rangers, along with team president John Davidson, on May 5 and had worked as an NHL network analyst ever since.

Molson will hold a press conference at 11 a.m. Monday at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard.

“On behalf of myself and the organization, I would like to thank Marc Bergevin, Trevor Timmins and Paul Wilson for their passion and commitment to our club over the past few years,” Molson said in a statement Sunday. “Their hard work has provided our fans with many great moments, including last summer’s playoff race which culminated in the Stanley Cup Final. We wish them all the success they deserve as they pursue their careers. However, I believe that the time has come for a change of leadership within our hockey operations department which will bring a new vision and should allow our fans and partners to continue to encourage a champion team.

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Bergevin also issued a statement on Sunday, saying he wanted to thank Molson, the players, coaches, management, all team staff and even the media. He also thanked the fans “for their support, their passion and their loyalty” to Canadians.

“It is with my head held high and with unforgettable memories that I leave my role as general manager of the Montreal Canadiens,” said Bergevin. “I wish this organization and my successor all the best for the future.”

After qualifying for the Stanley Cup Final last season, where they lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Canadiens are having their worst start in franchise history with a 6-15-2 record after Saturday night’s 6-3 win over the Penguins in Pittsburgh. . The Canadiens players had Sunday off and have a morning practice scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday in Brossard before facing the Vancouver Canucks on Monday night at the Bell Center. (7:30 p.m., SNE, RDS, TSN 690 Radio, 98.5 FM).

Bergevin was in his 10th season as general manager and it was the last year of his contract.

The Canadiens were 344-265-81 regular season overall during Bergevin’s tenure as general manager and missed the playoffs three times – in 2016, 2018 and 2019. The Canadiens were fortunate enough to participate in the playoffs over the past two seasons due to schedules and new playoff formats due to COVID-19, finishing 18th overall in the NHL last season and 24th overall the previous season.

Timmins was in his 17th season with the Canadiens and was promoted to assistant general manager in 2017. He was responsible for overseeing the team’s amateur scouting system, including the NHL Draft.

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Assistant general manager Scott Mellanby resigned from his post with the Canadiens on Saturday. He was hired shortly after Bergevin was appointed general manager in May 2012.

The Canadians hired Wilson three years ago to oversee all aspects of CH Group public affairs and communications, reporting directly to Molson. Wilson was from NATIONAL Public Relations, where he had been a partner since 2011.

Prior to joining the Rangers, Gorton worked for the Boston Bruins, starting as a scout before becoming an assistant general manager eight years later, followed by a stint as interim general manager after Mike O’Connell was sacked in 2006. Gorton was in charge of the 2006 NHL Draft for the Bruins when they selected Phil Kessel in the first round, Milan Lucic in the second round and Brad Marchand in the third round.

Gorton was also the original architect of the Rangers rebuild that began in 2018. One of his key deals sent Derick Brassard to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for Mika Zibanejad and a second-round pick.

The Rangers’ decision to fire Gorton and Davidson after last season shocked a lot of people in the hockey world. Chris Drury has been named president and general manager of the Rangers in their stead. The Rangers are 13-4-3 this season.

Gorton is now expected to be involved in the search for a new GM to replace Bergevin. Molson has made it clear in the past that he wants his GM and head coach to be bilingual, which limits the number of candidates.

With that in mind, possible candidates for the position include Mathieu Darche, now director of hockey operations with the Tampa Bay Lightning; Patrick Roy, now head coach and general manager of the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL; Martin Madden, assistant general manager of the Anaheim Ducks; and Roberto Luongo, special advisor to the general manager of the Florida Panthers.

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