New Canadiens coach Michel Therrien raring to start NHL season
Canadiens head coach Michel Therrien. (MARTIN CHEVALIER/QMI Agency)
Montreal Canadiens coach Michel Therrien feels like a "lion in a cage" as he awaits a resolution to the NHL lockout.
He said Wednesday everything was in place for training camp, which was to have started this weekend but has been postponed because of the impasse in negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement.
Therrien, heading into his first season with the Habs, said he took time to meet with all the players who came to Montreal in advance of the lockout last Saturday night. He said it was his first contact with numerous players.
"I am glad that Carey Price is back in Montreal," Therrien said of the team's star goalie. "I had the opportunity to talk to him a few times (on the phone) in the summer, but it is not the same as having the chance to finally sit down with him, it is not the same kind of conversation.
"He is in great form. He is in the best physical condition that has never been."
Therrien said he wasn't bothered by players electing to play in Europe during the lockout.
"It is up to them, but I told (Brian) Gionta to play his role as captain and to ensure that players remain in excellent physical condition," Therrien said. "They must not lose the momentum they gained during the summer so we can start on the right foot."