21 January 2010

Canadiens say au revoir to Georges Laraque.

Per TSN.ca (and, technically, per Kukla's Korner's retweet of Darren Dreger's tweet, including a link to the article), I present you the following:

Georges Laraque will not play another game with the Montreal Canadiens.

General manager Bob Gainey contacted him Thursday morning and told him that head coach Jacques Martin didn't had any confidence in him anymore and the team believes they can win without the enforcer in the lineup. The club does not intend to play him for the rest of the season and will buy him out at the end of the 2009-10 campaign.

In light of the recent events in Haiti, where Laraque's parents were born, he had the following to say about the timing of his firing:

"Classless," Laraque said angrily. "To do this in the midst of all I'm dealing with in Haiti, the timing is awful. I'm not going to sugar coat anything."

I don't know about all that. Obviously, the recent events in Haiti are horrendous; you'd have to be an absolutely soulless person not to feel a heavy sense of sadness about the aftermath of last week's earthquake.

But, really? Georges Laraque--notably a dirty player with a big mouth, which he completely owns up to having--wants a pass on getting fired for not doing his job for the past two years because of personal turmoil?

That's not the way it works. Laraque of all people should know this. One of the readers of the TSN article commented the following:
Honestly who pulls the Haiti card? The players always say they make business decisions. Does that mean when Gainey's daughter passed away on the boat that not one player should have been planning a new long term deal out of respect.
Agreed. You could make a similar argument for Jose Theodore, whose infant son died over the summer; meanwhile, this year, he's been wrangling with not only Semyeon Varlamov, but also Michal Neuvirth, for the prime goaltending spot in Washington.

Tragedy happens. It's a part of life. In Laraque's case, he hadn't been able to perform his job--the brute enforcer--with consistency, due to his long-suffering back problems and just general suckage, which occurred long before the catastrophe in Haiti.

If I can't perform the specific duties of my job, I highly doubt I'd be able to hold on to it by insisting to my employer that I had had something horrible happen to me personally, well after I had ceased excelling at my daily tasks.

Now, because I can't resist digging in a little bit on this one, I'll leave you with one of my favorite cliches: What goes around comes around. (My super-country aunt particularly enjoys using this adage on the daily.) To me, Laraque is one of the dirtiest douchebags in the League, and while I'm not really a spiritual person, I do believe that karmic retribution comes to all who deserve it, for better or for worse. Perhaps he would have had greater job security if he had made a career out of something other than headhunting (or kneehunting, for that matter).

For TSO's part, though, I did decide to take it easy on Laraque; for example, I did have "AHAHAHAHAHA" in the title, but I thought that might be taking it a little far.


  1. Considering I'm pretty sure he's still getting paid his full salary and will be paid the remainder of the salary on his contract, he should consider this pretty fortuitous timing.

    Since he's still drawing paychecks and suddenly has a lot of free time, he can now dedicate himself almost solely to helping people out in Haiti. Class is what you make of it, George; if the Haiti issue is something that truly has moved you so much, hearing your hockey season is over is something of a blessing in disguise.

  2. For a second I thought TSN stood for The Scrappy Natalie.

  3. Hard to feel sorry for someone like Laraque who makes his living making cheap shots on others. Lots of people get fired, but not all of them keep getting paid for two years. Good riddance. The NHL doesn't need people like him in the league.

    And J.J. makes an excellent point about all the time Georges will now have to help in Haiti!

  4. Georges Laraque has been dead to me since 11/21/09. Dead to me. Karmas a bitch asshole.

  5. Oh, BTW, my Kronwall is longing to be worn as soon as he comes back......

  6. I meant jersey, its not like I have a life-sized sex doll of him or anything. That would be just wrong.

  7. Dena: Right... We all believe you..

    @Laraque: Fuck off and go join the Pens or Avs broadcast team or something.

  8. I believe you said it best, Natalie, Karma's a bitch... And after what he did to Kronwall, I have little sympathy for him as a player. Personally, I had been hoping for a career-ending knee injury for him (would have been karma biting him in the ass) or maybe a concussion induced by the Kronwalling he would have gotten during their next meeting? But then again, maybe that makes me a terrible person.

    As far as Laraque as a person, I can't imagine dealing with the tragedy that is everything going on in Haiti. But to pull that card is pretty classless on his part. Could the Habs have done it as a better time? Sure. But it's business, and right now, like most teams, the business is making the playoffs. If they think they'll hava a better chance of making it without him, then au revoir... At least he gets paid for not playing...

    It kind of made me a little sick to see the amount of fawning that was going on over him on Hockey Night in Canada during the Habs/Sens game last weekend. I personally hope that his family in Haiti is OK, but a personal tragedy does not give one a pass to act like a jerk or excuse him from playing dirty.

  9. Okay, I'm not from Haiti so I can't understand his pain, but hell, my dad was on the same island, in the Dominican republic with his wife when it happened. You think I had a couple of scary hours before we managed to get in touch with them? His new father in law, a very nice, but volatile guy has driven food and medicine over to Port-au-Prince every second day since it happened. What I'm trying to get at is that this tragedy has affected a lot of people and while I understand that he is shaken up, well he has a good life, loads of cash, will earn money for the rest of the year and well, I have no sympathy for the cheapshotting bastard

  10. Well, I guess he now has the time to go along with that money to head out to Haiti and do some good. You'd think he'd consider it a blessing to help the family and friends he's so concerned about. Or am I missing something here?

  11. nursenitz, wishing karmic justice on someone doesn't make you a bad person, political correctness can sometimes be overrated. And besides, I don't think that Kronner would have exacted any revenge on him anyway, he's not a dirty player by any stretch of the imagination.

    Andy I'm glad your family is ok. It's awsome that people pull together and give back to society when horrible things happen.

  12. Andy, I'm glad your family is ok, too.

    I'm glad this wasn't misconstrued as me blowing off the entire Haitian tragedy...I just thought it was simultaneously hilarious and really, really sad that Laraque was using it to detract from his own shortcomings as a player and as a human being.

    Nurse Nitz, I thought the exact same thing about the goal that he scored. Whatever. If he were a decent human being, I'd be able to respect it. But not so much, coming from him.

    Dena, I KNEW you would loooove hearing this story. I was hoping you'd read this. At least it's SOME form of karmic retribution, right?

    JJ, Jenn, and Anonymous, you're all right--now he can put his money where his mouth is and try to "make a difference".

    Speaking of which...if you all haven't seen this (we made fun of it right after he took out Kronwall), go to his website, www.georgeslaraque.com. It's quite entertaining in its hypocrisy and stupidity.

    P.S. Gander, I had to stop myself from automatically typing TSO, so I guess that's sorta close to substituting it for The Scrappy Natalie. :)

  13. Thanks, my dad and step-mom were driving at the time and didn't even feel it. My step-sister thought her dog was under her bed moving weirdly, so it wasn't a huge crisis for them. But we didn't really know that, which was a bit scary.

    You have to be TSN from now on. That's just too awesome..

  14. Glad your family is okay, Andy.

    And this isn't making light of the tragedy - it's shaking one's head in disbelief that Laraque is basically saying "you can't fire me now because I'm upset and it's a bad time." There is NEVER a good time to fire someone - it gets done when it gets done, and everyone moves on as best they can.

    I hope he does take advantage of the time to raise money and supplies or help Haiti in some way.