MONTREAL – The All-Star break is a chance for the Montreal Canadiens players and staff to relax, refocus and re-energize…with one notable exception.
No, I’m not talking about P.K. Subban, who pulled off his best ‘Moves like Jagr’ at the skills competition.
I’m talking about the person who should be the highest paid member of the Habs staff: the team psychologist.
To describe the lead up to the All-Star break as a disaster is an understatement.
We should almost invent a new word for when you’re losing on the ice, having off-ice drama splashed across the headlines and having players dropping to injury left and right.
It seems like the Canadians haven’t only been losing their games – they may have also misplaced a part of their minds in the process.
Senseless mistakes are adding up and costing games.
Of course, you can point to the Andrei Markov turnover against the Boston Bruins two weeks ago as the most glaring example, but that’s not the only instance.
Mental toughness is every bit as important as the physical.
The thing is, it’s nearly impossible to train.
No matter how many hours you spend in the gym, it’s not going to help you when the problem is between your ears.
So, whether it’s Carey Price likely going stir-crazy as he watches his team drop game after game, or the growing pressure on each player as the Habs drop down another rung in the standings, someone is definitely in need of a little therapy.
That also applies to the fans.
Recently, a colleague at Global News remarked how angry she was with Marc Bergevin’s decision to trade Jarred Tinordi and Stefan Fournier for Arizona’s John Scott and Victor Bartley.
The city exploded into emotion over the trade.
How could Bergevin let Tinordi go?
Most fans know Scott was initially voted into the All-Star game as a joke (and we all know how that turned out).
He very eloquently and bravely laid out his side of the story about the experience of him being voted into the game on The Player’s Tribune?
I still think the trade is legitimate.
Tinordi had his chance here in Montreal, and time after time he squandered it.
Watching him in pre-season, his biggest mistake was the fear of making a mistake.
His tentativeness and unwillingness to use his God-given size was hurting him.
Montreal doesn’t have an enforcer after Zack Kassian was let go, so Scott is a good fit for the few times the Canadiens will need him.
The fans didn’t agree; they were furious, but taking emotion out the equation is part of what the players (and the fans) need to do.
After all, the way things are going, we’re all going to need a little therapy by the end of this season.
© 2016 Shaw Media