Report: Canadiens to retire Roy's No. 33 jersey

The Canadian Press
8/29/2008 11:49:56 AM
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MONTREAL - The Montreal Canadiens plan to retire jersey No. 33 of goaltender Patrick Roy in November, Montreal La Presse reported Friday.

A Canadiens spokesman would not confirm the report, saying the team does not comment on jersey retirements.

Roy, meanwhile, told the newspaper that he was unaware of any plans to retire his number.

"I don't know what's going on with that," said the Hall of Famer. "For sure it would be a great honour."

Roy led Montreal to Stanley Cups in 1986 and 1993 and is considered as one of the top goaltenders in NHL history, posting a record 551 wins in 19 seasons with the Canadiens and the Colorado Avalanche.

However, his career in Montreal ended abruptly in Dec. 1995, when he reacted with anger when left in goal by coach Mario Tremblay while being shelled by the Detroit Red Wings. He demanded a trade and was sent to Colorado, where he won a Cup with the Avalanche that season.

The Canadiens have been retiring numbers of their past greats each year leading up to their 100th anniversary in December 2009. Roy's jersey would be the 15th to be taken out of circulation.

Roy's jersey was retired by the Avalanche in 2003.

Since his retirement as a player in 2003, the 42-year-old Quebec City native has become a controversial figure in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League for a series of incidents on and off the ice. Roy is part-owner and coach of the junior Quebec Remparts.

The most recent came during the playoffs last spring when his son Jonathan skated the length of the ice and pounded opposing goaltender Bobby Nadeau of the Chicoutimi Sagueneens in an incident that was replayed countless times on television and led to a provincial government-ordered crackdown on violence in minor and junior hockey. Both Patrick and Jonathan Roy were suspended by the league.

It appeared that there was bad blood between the Canadiens and Roy, who has not attended other jersey retirement ceremonies in recent years. Roy said it was only because he was too busy with the Remparts.

"I don't know why people think there's a problem," said Roy. "I made a choice to run a junior team in Quebec City and because of that, I didn't have time to go to the Bell Centre.

"I would have like to have gone to some events, like the jersey retirements of Bob Gainey and Serge Savard. I would have liked to go see (ex-Rempart) Alexander Radulov play against the Canadiens, but each time, it was impossible."

The Canadiens are to announce events for their centennial season on Sept. 24, but it isn't certain that they'll make known any new jersey retirements at that time.


Patrick Roy (Photo: Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)


(Photo: Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)
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