Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Will Vincent Lecavalier avoid Montréal, or embrace it?

It's surprising the number of Canadiens fans on social media who presciently claim that "Vinny doesn't want to play here", or "He would never want to deal with the crazy pressure/fishbowl/difficult grocery situation."

While blogs and other outlets are an open forum and everyone is welcome to state their opinions, on this issue we have a few indications of what is going on, and by no means are they all negative.  Sure, he's going to be in demand, his asking price will be high, he may not be a fit, his family situation may warrant that he stays in Florida or the Southeast, but these are not decisive or even certain.

Another factor which is underplayed, in fact completely absent from the discussion, is that Vincent and his wife are both from Québec, as are most of the uncles and aunts and grandparents of the kids.  Now that is only one consideration, but surely it will play a part in the decision?  Vincent is no dummy.  He may think the pressure may be too great in Montréal, but he may also think that having his kids live here and learning the French language and getting to know their family better and hanging with their grandparents is a great opportunity.

To say nothing about how good the bleu-blanc-rouge #44 might look on him, and how that might speak to him, even though he had the Red Wings as his favourite team growing up.  As a teen, you do things to carve out an identity, and maybe being an Yzerman fan was one for him, but the Canadiens will still have some pull on a Montréal boy.

So while all the detractors make some valid points, let's keep an open mind and see how it plays out.  As much as there are reasons for Vincent to choose not to come here, and as much as there are reasons for the Canadiens to choose to not sign him, there are countervailing forces as well.

Let's not sell Marc Bergevin and Geoff Molson short, they have a few cards up their sleeves that other locales don't, they're not completely devoid of ammunition.  They can make a strong bid for his services, and both parties can decide.  I'm not saying it's likely he signs here, but there is a definite possibility, contrary to what the common wisdom seems to dictate.

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