Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin has been nominated for the General Manager of the Year Award for the second consecutive season.
Bergevin took over as the team’s general manager in May of 2012 after the team finished last in the Eastern Conference standings. Since then, Montreal has won a division title in the lockout shortened season and then posted a 100 point regular season for the first time since 2008.
Bergevin’s biggest signing in the offseason was to bring in playoff veteran Daniel Briere, a move that did not look great in the regular season but is paying huge dividends now that the Canadiens are in the Eastern Conference Final. Briere has seven points, which puts him sixth on the team in scoring, though he is only playing a depth role as a fourth line center.
He also signed Douglas Murray and traded for George Parros to bring in size and toughness to the team. Neither player made a huge mark on the season, but they were brought in to fill a certain role, and did just that.
During the season Bergevin made two under the radar trades, and one blockbuster minutes before the trade deadline went into effect. All three deals helped put the Habs in the position they are right now.
Bergevin picked up the biggest deadline fish when he acquired Thomas Vanek from the New York Islanders. Vanek has run hot and cold as a Hab, but helped bolster their power play down the stretch and gave them another goal scoring option. The big winger had 15 points in 18 regular season games with Montreal and has 8 points in 14 postseason games, which is fourth on the team in playoff scoring.
Bergevin also dealt seldom used defenseman Raphael Diaz to the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for right winger Dale Weise. Weise has proven to be an excellent depth player, using his size and speed to become a key member of the teams bottom six forward group. Weise also chipped in some timely playoff goals, scoring an overtime winner in Game 1 of the opening round, and opening the scoring in Game 7 against the Boston Bruins.
Dean Lombardi of the Los Angeles Kings and Bob Murray of the Anaheim Ducks are also in contention for the award. The winner will be announced at the NHL Awards in Las Vegas on June 24th.
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