Jeff Gorton isn't going anywhere

Although there were many rumours, Jeff Gorton was adamant about his wishes to stay in Montreal and win a Stanley Cup with the organization.
Montreal Canadiens Introduce Kent Hughes
Montreal Canadiens Introduce Kent Hughes / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages

With the Montreal Canadiens 2023-24 campaign officially coming to its end on Tuesday night, many questions have arisen; Jeff Gorton'splans stand out right at the top.

Habs media were curious as to whether he would pursue a general manager job elsewhere in the league. The idea was that he would have full control of all of the decisions, rather than being a second-in-command in Montreal. But it's pretty evident that while Kent Hughes holds the role of general manager and decision maker, Gorton isn't exactly a second-fiddle and they share the same goal.

If it isn't broken, don't fix it right? You can argue that a rebuild is fixing what is broken, though. But Gorton doesn't see it that way, he sees it as a team that is heading in the right direction. The organization has put in the footwork to establish something special and with a big offseason ahead, Hughes and Gorton are sure to be busy scouting and preparing for the draft in short order.

When the Habs traded Sean Monahan, it was crystal clear that management knew the team wasn't ready to compete for a playoff spot. For any team to admit that they weren't quite there yet, it's not easy; and the Habs have dealt with frustration the past two years. So it certainly wasn't easy for the team to go through, but they never gave up and competed until the final buzzer of the 2023-24 season, which showed what the team is made of.

Nick Suzuki could have succumbed to the added pressure, with the drop in support down the middle with Monahan gone, but something special happened. The captain was already playing at a crazy high level, but he seemed to elevate his game and take on the pressure like a veteran captain would. When the captain is buying in like that and taking his two younger linemates under his wing in a year of growth, it's a sign of something special being put together.

Mike Matheson is another example of a player who took on a massive leadership role this season, being a wingman, so to speak, for Suzuki. The young blueline has no issue sticking around to form a formidable blueline to compete for a Stanley Cup, hopefully in a few years, but Matheson is a little older. However, that doesn't seem to bother him; he knew his value was high at the Trade Deadline, but he was adamant about staying with the Habs.

With those two players, David Savard, Joel Armia and a couple of other veterans buying in and sticking around for a bright future, it's evident that Gorton has the same belief as his players. It's only a matter of time before the Canadiens pull through the mud of the rebuild and sail through the waters to become a contender. Once all of the chips fall into place and the core players develop chemistry with them, the Habs should start to show their high potential.

With Gorton staying put, Kent Hughes ready for a big offseason and Martin St. Louis sticking around, the Habs will eventually get to contender status, with a little more patience.