Carey Price’s Story Through Teammates Anecdotes

By JD Lagrange – For some weird reasons, Carey Price is the victim of a lot of abuse by many fans. While the goal here isn’t to start a language debate, and since I read as much in French as I do in English, I have to share my findings. It seems to be a lot less “popular” with the French media and fans than he is with the anglophone section of the fan base. I’m not going to enter into the why that is as it’s not the purpose of this article, but it’s very noticeable.

We are trying to stay in positivity or, as it’s sometimes referred to, as Habsitivity here at Cheering The Logo. Yesterday, I bumped into an amazing article. As it was in French and I know that many of our readers are not bilingual, I figured that I would share the many quotes and anecdotes, telling the story of Price’s career so far. All quotes are a translation from a TVA Sports article in French.

Philippe Sauvé (G) Hamilton Bulldogs

“When Carey arrived in Hamilton, I was the backup goalie behind Yan Danis. I was at the tail end of my career and I knew that the organization was counting a lot on Price. I had seen him play at the World Junior Championships and everyone knew that we were dealing with a special goalie”

“His arrival resulted in me being bumped to number three in the hierarchy. I went to see head coach Don Lever and made a deal with him. I was fine being “pushed away”, but I wanted to take Carey under my wing. I really wanted to get involved with him for everything that had to do with his integration to professional hockey.”

“At 19, Carey entered the dressing room and had the attitude of a guy saying: ‘stay calm boys, I’ll take care of everything‘. He contributed to calm everyone down, including the team’s veterans of many seasons. Look at the team we had at the time… there weren’t any big stars on that team! There is no way we would have won had he not been there.”

I was his roommate on the road and his simplicity really surprised me. He was always on the phone with his girlfriend and… insisted on eating his chocolate bars before bed. At one point, I told him that he couldn’t do that at the pro level. He simply smiled. Visibly, he loved chocolate! So I figured that as long as it didn’t show on the ice…”

“I remember when Bob Gainey, during a team meal between two games in the first round of the playoffs, camp to ask me what I thought of Carey Price. I told him right then and there that he had a superstar in coming in his hands. I never doubted it.”

Mathieu Biron (26 year-old defenseman at the time)

Price the cowboy

“Already, at that age, he had great aptitudes to stick handle the puck around his net. I played with Roberto Luongo but Carey had this capability of changing the pace of a game with his way of breaking the opponent’s game, transition to offense and put his defensemen in confidence. And I remind you that he was only 19!”

“Carey has always been a cowboy! In 2007, the rodeo side and everything around that trend, it wasn’t well known. I remember after our Calder Cup win, the guys all wanted to go to the bar and celebrate. When we got out of the arena, the guys all went directly to the closest discotheque. But not Carey.”

“Why? Because he absolutely want to wear his cowboy outfit! So he went to the hotel and came backf to the bar wearing his big hat, his plaid shirt and his big brown boots. Let’s say that he stood out beside us, wearing our suits and ties. But he had to! The guys were all laughing. But Carey is Carey. He has always stayed true to his roots, to whom he truly is. Even young, he wasn’t going to change to please us…”

Cristobal Huet (shared the net with Carey Price at his debuts)

“Right from the start, what jumped up at me is how quickly he moved in spite of his young age. He was very aggressive to the puck and he had this ability to read shots that was impressive.”

“What really threw me for a loop about Carey, it’s during his very first NHL game. The game was in Pittsburgh. I remember that he was very calm. Not nervous at all. There was a camera that came into the dressing room before the game and Carey had taken the time to write a note to his Mom and with a wink, showed it to the camera. At his very first NHL game! I was shocked.”

“Years went by and I realize that it’s this olympian calmness that has allowed him to establish himself the way he did. A goalie who can stay calm at all times, it has an effect on his entire team. Every player feels it and it’s been years now that Carey brings this calming aspect to the team.”

Pierre Groulx (Habs goalie coach during Price/Halak debate)

“Carey Price is a winner and he would play every game if he could. But Jacques (Martin) had taken a decision and he had to accept it. Evidently, Carey was very disappointed at the beginning.”

“He was mad for a while, but after a few discussions, he rapidly got back up. He understood that he had to be the best teammate possible and the entire team would be better off if he stayed positive in all of that.”

“It’s obvious that you can’t always have good days at the office. But as a goalie coach, I had to be there for him and listen to him. Sincerely, I loved the way he was able to rebound and forget his frustration. I was very impressed. He helped the team, in a way.”

“Pierre Gauthier, Jacques Martin and I had multiple discussions in the weeks leading up to the trade. Honestly, it wasn’t an easy decision because Halak was unbelievable for us. On the other hand, we saw how Price could become an elite goalie. The choice wasn’t evident. But when looking at the ensemble of Price’s work, his athleticism, but his human side too, we knew that he would be special. Today, we can say that the right decision was made.”

Mike Weaver (former Habs defenseman) – Kreider incident

“The Canadiens, it was predominantly Carey Price. When Dustin Tokarski jumped in to play, he didn’t do badly. Far from there! We didn’t score a lot and that didn’t help. But losing your star player, it hurt and Carey Price had this ability to reassure everyone by his presence alone.”

“Carey was so respectful that in spite of a frustration probably immense after his injury, he never shown any signs of anger. He kept positive and in no way did he want to be a distraction for the guys. He knew that the team had to stay positive and focussed and he acted accordingly. He has always put the team first.”

Carey as Superman

“Few people know that Carey is a joker and loves to play tricks. I remember one day, during a morning practice, before a game, we always repeated the same warm-up exercise. A coach shot the puck behind the net, a defenseman went and got it and we would break out. And we started over. Normally, Carey had to stop the puck behind his net, then leave the puck to the defenseman and go back in front of his net.

“That morning, he decided to get the puck and each time, he would put it in my skates. He repeated that about ten times. A one point, the coaches asked me to pass the puck to the wingers quicker. I then told them that Carey was doing it on purpose to put the puck in my skates, making my job harder. I heard Price burst out laughing. We had that kind of relationship, he and I.”

“When you play against Carey, you know that he’s the best goalie in the world. You know it, that’s all. He’s intimidating, he’s scary. What’s fascinating about him is that once his equipment is off, you’re in front of the most normal guy there is. He’s always dressed casual and his main topics of discussion are hunting and fishing. You see the type? Sometimes, I’m struggling to understand how a guy this normal off the ice can transform himself into Superman when he’s on the ice. It’s crazy!”

Daniel Brière (former Habs’ forward)

“It would have been quite the run! Very few people saw us get passed the Lightning in the first round. Then, we were total underdogs against Boston in the next round. But when we beat the Bruins, that’s when we started believing to a Stanley Cup finals in Montreal. I’m convinced that we would have gotten there had Carey Price not gotten hurt.”

“The Kings, finalists in the West, had a big team and they were heavy, particularly their forwards. They were a big hockey machine. However, in the Stanley Cup finals, anything can happen. And it’s even more true with a Carey Price in top form…”

Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau (former Habs’ forward)

“To me, he is the best player on the Canadiens for 15 years. Price’s 2015 season, it was the best season I’ve seen from a hockey player. And I played with star players! Honestly, he stole at least 15 games on his own. At least. And I’m talking about 15 games that we should have clearly lost four or five to one, but that we won 1-0. The guys started laughing about it in the dressing room as it was ridiculous.”

“In my eyes, Carey Price has always hidden a lot of flaws on the Canadiens, particularly during the Bergevin era. If you put that guy on a team with some interesting potential, I’m pretty sure that he has at least one Stanley Cup today. I’ve always had some issues with the treatment some fans give Carey Price since his arrival in Montreal. I don’t think he has the respect that he deserves.”

2015 Hardware

“We couldn’t even score against him in practice! Listen, I’ve played with Henrik LUndqvist and Semyon Varlamov and it wasn’t like that. Pacioretty could get to 10-15 from Price’s net, but he couldn’t beat him! And Carey challenged him regularly. He was telling him: ‘Let’s go! Bring it, buddy‘. He was so competitive! The skills’ level from Price, the way he dominates his opponents, you can’t explain it with words! I know that he doesn’t display it because of his calmness, but Carey is one of the most competitive guys in this league, believe me.”

“Carey, it was never his words. It was his actions. Never have I seen him stand up in the dressing room and rip a teammate. Yet, you’ll agree that it’s not the occasions that have been lacking to put a defenseman in his place! But Carey kept focussed, in his bubble and was taking care of delivering the goods. In fact, it was probably the best type of response he could offer when it wasn’t going well for the team. I highly respect that.”

Paul Byron (teammate since 2015)

“Just being able to see, in person, the saves he made during the last playoffs, it was crazy. To see him play at that level, it was giving us confidence. Our work had become so simple. If I can be honest, the feeling in the dressing room was that each game we start with Carey in net, we believe we can win it.”

“In the Spring, we were telling ourselves that all we had to do was to score two or three goals and the work was done. I have never seen in my entire life a goalie play like that. Honestly, the simple fact to see Carey play in the playoffs was, in itself, an unforgivable experience for every player on the team.”

“To me, one of his most memorable saves was against Jason Spezza in the first period of game three in Toronto. The score was 0-0 and the series was tied at one. He managed to dive to his right to rob Spezza with his stick. The net was wide open. It was crazy.”

“Other than that, he often shut the door to Mitch Marner when the Leafs were on the man advantage during games five and six. Saves that allowed the series to keep going. I also remember a huge save on Mark Stone against Vegas. At some point, he just became a habit for Carey. He committed a robbery at least once a game.”

“At my second season in Montreal, I bought my first house here. Angela, Carey’s wife, then told my wife that Carey liked getting to the games by himself. So for two years, I was going to the Bell Centre with Andrew Shaw, Jeff Petry and Shea Weber. We had sort of a mini-bus and had our routine: we got to the rink together.”

“But one morning, Carey suggested taking me to the arena. It was even on a game day! Honestly, I was frightened. I didn’t want him to have a bad game because of me! We finally made it a habit to travel together. The first few times were pretty quiet. But one day, while he wasn’t really talking, he took out a duck call and made funny sounds with it. Just out of a sudden. We started laughing so hard, and it immediately killed the tension in the vehicle.”

“He is so sharp that he can tell you the day you managed to beat him at practice. He’ll come out with something like: ‘yeah, you scored against me two weeks ago during that drill.’

“I love Price the goalie, but even more so the man. If I’m Kent Hughes, I keep him.” ~ Bob Hartley

“It really took a while before I managed to score against him! To have a chance to face him every day makes your job easier during games. He brings the challenge to another level.”

“Against the Islanders, there was a special atmosphere in the dressing room. His return was a big dose of energy for us. The last few weeks were demanding. We often face dominant teams and we were sometimes on the road for long stretches. I was personally very happy to see him back. He was gone for so long.”

“An injury like the one he suffered is very difficult for a player. Physically, of course, but also mentally. It plays with your emotions. There were times in the process where games were hard to watch. Carey so has the team at heart that he wanted to play every game. I could really see that it was bothering him not to be able to help us.”

“I know Carey very well, as we’ve been playing together for a long time. There were days when his face spoke for him: he was fed-up and wanted to get into games. He went through a lot of frustrations this season. When he found out that he could come back this year, he was very excited.”


So there you have it. I found this article extremely interesting and fun to read and I hope that you feel the same. I’m also hoping that if you were someone who was on Carey’s case, that you might be able to see who he really is and what he means to his teammates and, ultimately, to the Canadiens. I strongly encourage you to have a read at the articles listed below as you will learn even more about Carey Price, the man.

By the way, you can now follow me on my original Twitter account @JD_Lagrange where I will be making spicier comments, leaving @CheeringTheLogo to promote the site, its articles and podcast.

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