Montreal Canadiens
Canadiens de Montréal
Conference Eastern (Conférence de l'Est)
Division Atlantic
Founded December 4, 1909
History Montreal Canadiens
1909–1917 (NHA)
1917–present (NHL)
Arena Bell Centre (Centre Bell)
City Montreal, Quebec
Team Colours red, white, blue
Media English
CJNT Montreal (CJNT-DT)
Sportsnet East
Réseau des sports(RDS)
TVA Sports
Owner(s) Flag of Canada Molson family
General Manager Flag of Canada Marc Bergevin
Head Coach Flag of Canada Michel Therrien
Captain Vacant
Minor League affiliates Hamilton Bulldogs (AHL)
Cincinnati Cyclones (ECHL)
Stanley Cups 24 (1915–16, 1923–24, 1929–30, 1930–31, 1943–44, 1945–46, 1952–53, 1955–56, 1956–57, 1957–58, 1958–59, 1959–60, 1964–65, 1965–66, 1967–68, 1968–69, 1970–71, 1972–73, 1975–76, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1985–86, 1992–93)
Presidents' Trophies 0
Conferences 8 (1975–76, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1980–81, 1985–86, 1988–89, 1992–93)
Divisions 22 (1927–28, 1928–29, 1929–30, 1930–31, 1931–32, 1936–37, 1967–68, 1968–69, 1972–73, 1974–75, 1975–76, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1978–79, 1979–80, 1980–81, 1981–82, 1984–85, 1987–88, 1988–89, 1991–92, 2007–08)
Official Website
70px 70px
Home ice
Montreal Canadiens ice rink logo

The Montreal Canadiens (Les Canadiens de Montréal) are a professional ice hockey team based in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. They are members of the Northeast Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The club is officially known as le Club de hockey Canadien.[1] French nicknames for the team include Les Canadiens (or Le Canadien), Le Bleu-Blanc-et-Rouge, La Sainte-Flanelle,[2] Le Tricolore, Les Glorieux (or Nos Glorieux), Les Habitants, Le CH and Le Grand Club. In English, the team's main nickname is the Habs, an abbreviation of "Les Habitants". (Note: Even in English, the French spelling, Canadiens, is always used.)

Founded in 1909, the Canadiens are the longest continuously operating professional ice hockey team and the only existing NHL club to predate the founding of the NHL, as well as one of the oldest North American sports franchises. The franchise is one of the "Original Six" teams, a description used for teams that were part of the NHL from 1942 until the 1967 expansion. With the departure of the Quebec Nordiques in 1995, the Canadiens are the sole NHL team in Quebec. The team's championship season in 1992–93 marks the last time a Canadian team won the Stanley Cup.[3]

The Canadiens have won 24 Stanley Cups (including their first in 1916, before the NHL existed), more than any other team.[4] On a percentage basis, as of 2010, the franchise has won 25% of all Stanley Cup championships contested after the Challenge Cup era, making it one of the most successful professional sports teams of the traditional four major sports of Canada and the United States.[5]

Since 1996, the Canadiens have played their home games at the Bell Centre, which was named the Molson Centre until 2003.[6] Former homes of the team include Jubilee Rink, Montreal Westmount Arena, Mount Royal Arena and the Montreal Forum. The Forum was considered a veritable shrine to hockey fans everywhere,[7] and housed the team for seven decades and all but their first two Stanley Cup championships.

They are known for their bitter rivalries against both the Boston Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs.




The Canadiens were founded by J. Ambrose O'Brien on December 4, 1909, as a charter member of the National Hockey Association,[8][9] the forerunner to the National Hockey League. It was to be the team of the francophone community in Montreal, composed of francophone players, and under francophone ownership as soon as possible.[10] The team's first season was not a success, placing last. After the first year, ownership was transferred to George Kennedy of Montreal[11] and the team's fortunes improved over the next seasons. The team won its first Stanley Cup championship in the 1915–16 season.[8] In 1917, with four other NHA teams, the Canadiens formed the NHL,[8] and they won their first NHL Stanley Cup during the 1923–24 season, led by Howie Morenz. The team moved to the Montreal Forum for the 1926–27 season.[8]

In the 1930s, the club started the decade with success with Stanley Cups in 1930 and 1931. However, the club and its then Montreal rival, the Montreal Maroons declined both on the ice and economically during the Depression. Losses grew to the point where the team owners considering selling the team to Cleveland, Ohio interests. However, local investors were found and instead it was the Maroons that suspended operations, and several of the Maroons players moved to the Canadiens.

Led by the "Punch Line" of Maurice "Rocket" Richard, Toe Blake and Elmer Lach in the 1940s, the Canadiens enjoyed success again atop the NHL. From 1952 to 1960, the franchise won six Stanley Cups, including a record five straight from 1956 to 1960, with a new set of stars coming to prominence: Jean Beliveau, Dickie Moore, Doug Harvey, Bernie "Boom Boom" Geoffrion, Jacques Plante, and Richard's younger brother, Henri.

The Canadiens added ten more championships in fifteen seasons from 1965 to 1979,[8] with another dynastic run of four straight Cups from 1976 to 1979.[8] In the 1976–77 season, the Canadiens set a modern-day record for fewest losses by only losing eight games in an 80-game season. The next generation of stars included Guy Lafleur, Yvan Cournoyer, Ken Dryden, Pete Mahovlich, Steve Shutt, Bob Gainey, Serge Savard, Guy Lapointe and Larry Robinson. Scotty Bowman, who would later set a record for most NHL victories by a coach, was the team's head coach for its last five Stanley Cup victories in the 70s.

The Canadiens won Stanley Cups in 1986, led by rookie star goaltender Patrick Roy,[8] and in 1993,[8] continuing their streak of winning at least one championship in every decade from the 1910s to the 1990s. In 1996, the Habs moved from the Montreal Forum, their home during 71 seasons and 22 Stanley Cups, to the Molson Centre (now the Bell Centre).[8]

On December 29, 2008 the Canadiens won 5-2 over the Florida Panthers to become the first team in NHL history to reach 3,000 victories.

100-saisons logo

Commemorative 100th anniversary logo for 2008–09

Centennial celebrations

The Montreal Canadiens retired various uniform numbers as part of its leadup to its celebrations during the 2008–09 and 2009–10 seasons. As part of the scheduled events for 2009, Montreal hosted the 2009 NHL All-Star Game,[12] and the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

Pour toujours, les Canadiens! is a 2009 Quebec feature film about the centennial celebrations, written by Jacques Savoie and directed by Sylvain Archambault. The film debuted in theatres on December 4, 2009, the Canadiens' centennial.[13][14].


Le Canadien in the playoffs against Ottawa Senators. They lose 1st match at the Bell Centre 2-4. Canadien had finished 2nd in the East Conference, les Senateurs 7th.

Team colours and mascot


Logo used (1917-19, 1921-22)

For more details on this topic, see History of the Montreal Canadiens.

The current team colours are red, blue and white. These colours have been used in combination since 1914. The Canadiens' colours are an important part of French Canadian culture. In the short story "The Hockey Sweater", Roch Carrier described the influence of the Canadiens and their jersey within rural Quebec communities during the 1940s.[15] The story was later made into an animated short, The Sweater, narrated by Carrier.[16] A passage from the short appears on the 2002 issue of the Canadian five dollar bill.[17][18]

One of sport's oldest and most recognizable logos, the classic 'C' and 'H' of the Montreal Canadiens was first used together in the 1917–18 season, when the club changed its name to Club de hockey Canadien from Club athlétique Canadien,[19] before evolving to its current form in 1952–53. The 'H' does not stand for 'Habs' or Habitants; this is a misconception. It actually stands for 'Hockey', as in 'Club de hockey Canadien', the official name of the team. According to, the first man to refer to the team as "the Habs" was American Tex Rickard, owner of the Madison Square Garden, in 1924. Rickard apparently told a reporter that the "H" on the Canadiens' sweaters was for "Habitants."[20]


The home Hockey jersey is predominantly red in colour. There are four blue and white stripes, one across each arm, one across the chest and the other across the waist. The main road sweater is mainly white with a red and blue stripe across the waist, red at the end of both arm sleeves and the shoulders are also draped with red. The basic design has been in use since 1914, with the current version dating from 1952. Because of the team's lengthy history and significance in Quebec, the sweater has been referred to as 'La Sainte-Flanelle' (the holy flannel sweater).[2]


Nos bras meurtris vous tendent le flambeau, à vous toujours de le porter bien haut.

To you from failing hands we throw the torch. Be yours to hold it high.

The motto is from the poem "In Flanders Fields" by John McCrae which was written in 1915, the year before the Canadiens won their first Stanley Cup championship.


Beginning in the 2004–05 NHL season, the Canadiens adopted Youppi as their official mascot, the first costumed mascot in their long history. Youppi was the longtime mascot for the Montreal Expos baseball team, but was dropped from the franchise when they moved to Washington, D.C. in 2004 and became the Washington Nationals. With the switch, Youppi became the first mascot in professional sports to switch leagues.[21] The terms of the deal was reportedly in the six figures.[22]

The team has previously had children as mascots who would skate with the team during warm-ups and during intermissions. One notable child mascot was the son of player Howie Morenz, Howie Morenz Jr. Other mascots were typically the children of players or Canadiens management.

Seasons and records

Season by season results

This is a partial list of the last five seasons completed by the Canadiens. For the full season-by-season history, see List of Montreal Canadiens seasons.

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, OTL = Overtime Losses, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against, PIM = Penalties in minutes

Season GP W L OTL Pts GF GA PIM Finish Playoffs
2005–06 82 42 31 9 93 243 247 1312 3rd, Northeast Lost in Conference Quarterfinals, 2-4 (Hurricanes)
2006–07 82 42 34 6 90 245 256 1119 4th, Northeast Did not qualify
2007–08 82 47 25 10 104 262 222 1072 1st, Northeast Lost in Conference Semifinals, 1-4 (Flyers)
2008–09 82 41 30 11 93 249 247 1223 2nd, Northeast Lost in Conference Quarterfinals, 0–4 (Bruins)
2009–10 82 39 33 10 88 217 223 936 4th, Northeast In Progress (see 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs)

Franchise individual records

For more details on this topic, see List of Montreal Canadiens records.

Franchise scoring leaders

These are the top-ten point-scorers in franchise history. Figures are updated after each completed NHL regular season.

Note: Pos = Position; GP = Games Played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; P/G = Points per game

Updated at completion of 2007–2008 season

Player Pos GP G A Pts P/G
Guy Lafleur RW 961 518 728 1246 1.30
Jean Beliveau C 1125 507 712 1219 1.08
Henri Richard C 1256 358 688 1046 0.83
Maurice Richard RW 978 544 421 965 0.99
Larry Robinson D 1202 197 686 883 0.73
Yvan Cournoyer RW 968 428 435 863 0.89
Jacques Lemaire C 853 366 469 835 0.98
Steve Shutt LW 871 408 368 776 0.89
Bernie Geoffrion RW 766 371 388 759 0.99
Saku Koivu C 779 191 450 641 0.81

Source: Statistics | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens. Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved on 2009-06-27.

Records - skaters


* Indicates a league record.

Source: Season records - Individual records - Skaters | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens. Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved on 2008-12-12.

Records - goaltenders


* Indicates a league record.

Source: Season records - Individual records - goaltenders | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens. Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved on 2008-12-12.

Current roster

Updated September 16, 2010.

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
35 Flag of Canada.svg Auld, AlexAlex Auld

G L 39 2010 Cold Lake, Alberta
17 Flag of Canada.svg Boyd, DustinDustin Boyd

D L 33 2010 Winnipeg, Manitoba
13 Flag of Canada.svg Cammalleri, MichaelMichael Cammalleri

LW L 38 2009 Richmond Hill, Ontario
52 Flag of Canada.svg Darche, MathieuMathieu Darche

LW L 43 2009 Montreal, Quebec
81 Flag of Denmark Eller, LarsLars Eller

 Injury icon

G L 31 2010 Rodovre, Denmark
75 Flag of the United States Gill, HalHal Gill


D L 45 2009 Concord, Massachusetts
21 Flag of the United States Gionta, BrianBrian Gionta


RW R 41 2009 Rochester, New York
91 Flag of the United States Gomez, ScottScott Gomez

C L 40 2009 Anchorage, Alaska
26 Flag of Canada.svg Gorges, JoshJosh Gorges

D L 35 2007 Kelowna, British Columbia
15 Flag of the United States Halpern, JeffJeff Halpern

C L 44 2010 Potomac, Maryland
44 Flag of the Czech Republic Hamrlik, RomanRoman Hamrlik

D L 46 2007 Zlín, Czechoslovakia
46 Flag of Belarus Kostitsyn, AndreiAndrei Kostitsyn

LW L 35 2003 Navapolatsk, Soviet Union
40 Flag of Canada.svg Lapierre, MaximMaxim Lapierre

C R 35 2003 Montreal, Quebec
79 Flag of Russia Markov, AndreiAndrei Markov

 (AInjury icon

D L 41 1998 Voskresensk, Soviet Union
61 Flag of Canada.svg Maxwell, BenBen Maxwell

C L 32 2006 North Vancouver, British Columbia
32 Flag of Canada.svg Moen, TravisTravis Moen

LW L 38 2009 Stewart Valley, Saskatchewan
20 Flag of Canada.svg O'Byrne, RyanRyan O'Byrne

D R 35 2003 Victoria, British Columbia
14 Flag of the Czech Republic Plekanec, TomasTomas Plekanec

C L 37 2001 Kladno, Czechoslovakia
57 Flag of Canada.svg Pouliot, BenoitBenoit Pouliot

LW L 33 2009 Alfred, Ontario
31 Flag of Canada.svg Price, CareyCarey Price

G L 32 2005 Vancouver, British Columbia
94 Flag of Canada.svg Pyatt, TomTom Pyatt

C L 33 2009 Thunder Bay, Ontario
6 Flag of the Czech Republic Spacek, JaroslavJaroslav Spacek

D L 46 2009 Rokycany, Czechoslovakia
76 Flag of Canada.svg Subban, P.K.P.K. Subban

D R 31 2007 Toronto, Ontario


Team captains

Head coaches

Source: Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens. Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved on 2008-12-12.

Honoured members

For more details on this topic, see List of Montreal Canadiens award winners.

Hockey Hall of Famers

In the Hockey Hall of Fame, the Canadiens boast the second-most enshrined Hall-of-Famers with forty-two. All of their inductees are from Canada (defenceman Joe Hall was born in England but raised in Manitoba). Thirty-six of these players are from three separate notable dynasties: 12 from 1955–1960, 11 from 1964–1969 and 13 from 1975-1979. Howie Morenz and Georges Vezina were the first Canadiens given the honour in 1945, while Patrick Roy and Dick Duff were the most recently inducted, in 2006.

Montreal Canadiens Hall of Famers
Player Nat. Position Inducted
Howie Morenz Flag of Canada.svg C 1945
Georges Vezina Flag of Canada.svg G 1945
Aurele Joliat Flag of Canada.svg LW 1947
Newsy Lalonde Flag of Canada.svg C 1950
Joe Malone Flag of Canada.svg C 1950
Sprague Cleghorn Flag of Canada.svg D 1958
Herb Gardiner Flag of Canada.svg LW 1958
Sylvio Mantha Flag of Canada.svg D 1960
Maurice "Rocket" Richard Flag of Canada.svg RW 1961
Joe HallFlag of Great Britain D 1961
George HainsworthFlag of Canada.svg G 1961
Jack LavioletteFlag of Canada.svg D 1962
Didier PitreFlag of Canada.svg RW 1962
Albert "Babe" SiebertFlag of Canada.svg LW 1964
Bill Durnan Flag of Canada.svg G 1964
Ken ReardonFlag of Canada.svg D 1966
Hector "Toe" BlakeFlag of Canada.svg LW 1966
Emile BouchardFlag of Canada.svg D 1966
Elmer LachFlag of Canada.svg C 1966
Tom JohnsonFlag of Canada.svg D 1970
Jean BeliveauFlag of Canada.svg C 1972
Bernard "Boom Boom" GeoffrionFlag of Canada.svg RW 1972
Doug HarveyFlag of Canada.svg D 1973
Dickie MooreFlag of Canada.svg LW 1974
Jacques PlanteFlag of Canada.svg G 1978
Henri "Pocket Rocket" RichardFlag of Canada.svg C 1979
Lorne "Gump" WorsleyFlag of Canada.svg G 1980
Frank MahovlichFlag of Canada.svg LW 1981
Yvan Cournoyer Flag of Canada.svg RW 1982
Ken Dryden Flag of Canada.svg G 1983
Jacques Lemaire Flag of Canada.svg C 1984
Bert Olmstead Flag of Canada.svg RW 1985
Serge Savard Flag of Canada.svg D 1986
Jacques Laperriere Flag of Canada.svg D 1987
Guy Lafleur Flag of Canada.svg RW 1988
Bud O'Connor Flag of Canada.svg RW 1988
Bob Gainey Flag of Canada.svg LW 1992
Guy Lapointe Flag of Canada.svg D 1993
Steve Shutt Flag of Canada.svg LW 1993
Larry Robinson Flag of Canada.svg D 1995
Denis Savard Flag of Canada.svg C 2000
Rod Langway Flag of the United States D 2002
Patrick Roy Flag of Canada.svg G 2006
Dick Duff Flag of Canada.svg LW 2006

Retired numbers

The Canadiens have retired fifteen numbers in honour of seventeen players,[24] the most of any team in the National Hockey League, and the third highest total of any of the four major professional sports leagues of the United States and Canada. All of the honourees were born in Canada. Howie Morenz was the first honouree on November 2, 1937.

Montreal Canadiens retired numbers
No. Player Retired
1 Jacques Plante October 7, 1995
2 Doug Harvey October 26, 1985
3 Emile Bouchard December 4, 2009
4 Jean Beliveau October 9, 1971
5 Bernard Geoffrion March 11, 2006
7 Howie Morenz November 2, 1937
9 Maurice Richard October 6, 1960
10 Guy Lafleur February 16, 1985
12 Dickie Moore November 12, 2005
12 Yvan Cournoyer November 12, 2005
16 Henri Richard December 10, 1975
16 Elmer Lach December 4, 2009
18 Serge Savard November 18, 2006
19 Larry Robinson November 19, 2007
23 Bob Gainey February 23, 2008
29 Ken Dryden January 29, 2007
33 Patrick Roy November 22, 2008
99 Wayne Gretzky February 6, 2000 (Retired League-Wide)

See also


  1. Club de hockey Canadien, Inc. (2008). Montreal Canadians: Privacy Policy. Retrieved on 2008-09-04.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hamilton, Graeme (2008-10-22). Are the Canadiens a religion?. National Post. The National Post Company. Retrieved on 2008-12-12.
  3. The Complete List of Stanley Cup Champions. (2007). Retrieved on 2006-02-14.
  4. Stanley Cup Champions and Finalists. (2007). Retrieved on 2007-02-14.
  5. As of July 2008, the Boston Celtics have the highest percentage of National Basketball Association championships with 28%, and in Major League Baseball, the New York Yankees have the highest percentage with 25%. NBA Finals: All-Time Champions. NBA Media Ventures. Retrieved on 2008-07-22. World Series History: Championships by Club. MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved on 2008-07-22.
  6. Molson Centre renamed Bell Centre. CBC Sports (2002). Retrieved on 2007-02-14.
  7. The end of an era (The Montreal Forum). High Beam Research (1996). Archived from the original on 2007-02-10. Retrieved on 2007-02-10.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 Montreal Canadiens Hockey Team. Retrieved on 2008-08-13.
  9. Stubbs, Dave (2008-09-04), "Canadiens toy with game at Olympic Stadium", Montreal Gazette: C2, <>. Retrieved on 2008-09-04
  10. Jenish. {{{title}}}, 10–11. 
  11. Canadian Dictionary of Biography online. Government of Canada Library and Archives (2007). Retrieved on 2007-04-30.
  12. Montreal will host 2009 NHL All-Star events. (2007). Retrieved on 2007-02-14.
  13. Pour toujours, les Canadiens! à l'affiche en décembre 2009
  14. File: Sur le plateau de Pour toujours, les Canadiens!
  15. Tarasoff, Tamara (2004-12-10). Roch Carrier and The Hockey Sweater. Canadian Museum of Civilization Corporation. Retrieved on 2008-09-04.
  16. National Film Board of Canada Production (2008). The Sweater. NFB — Collection. National Film Board of Canada Production. Retrieved on 2008-09-04.
  17. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (2008). The Spirit of Hockey. CBC Archives. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved on 2008-09-20.
  18. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (2008). The Virtual Hot Stove. Hockey: A People's History. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved on 2008-09-04.
  19. Coffey, Phil (February 8, 2008). - Ice Age: Playing the point on many issues - 02/08/2008. Retrieved on 2008-12-12.
  20. Why are the Montreal Canadiens called the Habs?. (2008). Retrieved on 2008-04-30.
  21. Canadiens adopt Youppi! as their mascot. NBC (2005). Retrieved on 2008-06-13.
  22. Canadian Press (2005-09-16). Canadiens get Youppi! to be Mascot. Retrieved on 2008-07-25.
  24. Club de hockey Canadien (2008). Montreal Canadiens - History. Retrieved on 2008-02-23.

Further reading

  • Mouton, Claude (1987). The Montreal Canadiens. Toronto, ON: Key Porter Books. ISBN 155013051X. 

External links

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