Saturday, 12 October 2013

The firing, over four years ago, still stings

Guy has done a special interview with the Quebec newspaper La Presse, concerning his firing from the Canadiens in March 2009 and his relationship with Bob Gainey.

The Google translation to English is wonky; I've tried to clean it up to the best of my ability.

I can understand the pain felt by coach Peter Laviolette, who was fired by the Flyers earlier this week.
The memories of my own dismissal are still fresh in my memory, even four and a half years later ...
Coming back from Dallas on March 9, 2009, I was happy on the plane, because we had won the match against the Stars, and things seemed to get back into place after a slump in January.
We would play 11 of our last 16 games at home, where we had a good record. I foresaw the end of the season with optimism, especially as our injured players began to return to the game.
When we landed in Montreal around noon, I received a call from Bob Gainey, who did not accompany the team to Dallas.
I took the call, expecting to receive congratulations from him for our game against the Stars. He asked me to meet him as soon as possible at the Bell Centre. I told him that I would spend some time at home before we met.
When he told me he would meet me at home, I asked why. I experienced great emotions with this man. I was with him when his wife died. I was one of the first people he called after the tragedy of his daughter. I thought he had serious things to discuss.
But I was not expecting bad news about my job.  We had, after all, 104 points last year, and despite our slump during the winter, our record was 35-24-7. I coached in the All-Star Game as assistant to Claude Julien.  Nothing allowed me to believe that my job was in danger.
When I opened the door, I felt something strange. He sat at the table, my wife was with me. Bob told me that he wanted to make changes and I was relieved of my duties.
I was in shock. I said "what?"  I was fired for the first time in my life.  I tried to find out why, but when I saw that it was useless, I thanked him and I said goodbye, saying that he had made a mistake.
I went on a very long walk.  That was in March and it was cold, but I did not freeze ...
What makes it worse today is that I still don't know the reason why Bob fired me.  I wish I had a reason.  Because of our long friendship as coaches, as former teammates, I believe I deserved a reason.
I would have preferred him to say: we tried you, but you're not a good coach.  Nothing like that. He fired me without telling me why.
We have spoken twice since.  It was cordial, and I agreed to meet him in the hope that I would finally learn why he fired me.  This has not happened.  I do not know if it will happen one day, probably not, but for me, it would allow me to finally close this chapter of my career. 

Interview by Mathias Brunet

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