Originally written October 25, 2011 on centericechat.com:

Veteran bench boss Jacques Martin is answering the cries of fans to be removed from the coveted bench of the Montreal Canadiens. With arguably the most passionate fans any sports franchise could ask for, and enough talent in the locker room to transcend into a winning record, let along a win this season at the Bell Centre (which hasn’t happened, yet), Martin is brushing off outrage in Montreal fused by a 1-5-2 record after a 2-1 loss against the Florida Panthers on Monday. All in all, the decision lies with Habs GM Pierre Gauthier. Does the blame rest on the broad shoulders of the winning-record coach (601-474-121-74)? Of course not. The Habs are far from thrifty with an a generous ownership compared to most teams, and are ninth in spending to the salary cap with $62,992,585. It’s how that money is distributed, and the results, that has yielded results. Philadelphia Flyers. Washington Capitals. Buffalo Sabres. Toronto Maple Leafs. Pittsburgh Penguins. Those are the teams who are spending more this year. They all rank about the Montreal in ninth, and they all make blockbuster-type deals in the off-season. (Maybe excluding the Penguins.) The Habs have all ready lost to the Leafs twice, the Sabres once, the Penguins once, and have to play the Flyers tomorrow. Additionally, don’t discredit the Panthers, who had to spend more than any other team to surpass the floor by grabbing nearly any available expensive contract. Regardless, the Cats are prowling this year. The cries of overthrowing Martin may be coming too early, and the assumptions of a lack-luster coaching performance may be coming on too thick, but the Canadiens just need time and space in the schedule to adapt to a rougher, tougher Eastern Conference. Article written by Matt Wilson. Follow him on Twitter @Mattjw24.

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