A Few Questions About New Montreal Canadiens General Manager Kent Hughes

MONTREAL, QC - FEBRUARY 11: A detail of the Montreal Canadiens logo (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
MONTREAL, QC - FEBRUARY 11: A detail of the Montreal Canadiens logo (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /

Following last season where everything went right for the Montreal Canadiens (well, until they met the Tampa Bay Lightning), everything has gone wrong for the Canadiens this year. They sit last in the NHL and have less than ten wins after 41 games into the season. Montreal is in for a historically bad finish.

Now Montreal has a new general manager after the organization announced it hired Kent Hughes. Hughes will be the 18th manager in the team’s storied history and replaces the man who built a Stanley Cup finalist team, Marc Bergevin. After learning about Hughes, a few interesting observations come to mind that might need to be discussed.

He’s A Player Agent

Hughes lacks any NHL front office experience and prior to earning the Montreal job was a player agent. A recent example of “agent turned general manager” can be found in a different sport with Brodie Van Wagenen. He was recently general manager of the New York Mets of Major League Baseball but just like Hughes, only had a resume of a player agent beforehand.

He lasted two years on the job from 2019-2020 with the team underperforming both seasons. His lack of experience and failure to deliver results were well criticized in the fan community and New York sports media.

The Montreal Canadiens have a new general manager. The former player agent has a son eligible for this year’s NHL entry draft.

That was baseball, but in hockey it’s a different story. NHL.com’s article on the hire has a sizeable list of former NHL player agents who became NHL general managers. Included in that list is Cup-winning former Quebec Nordiques turned Colorado Avalanche general manager Pierre Lacroix.

He Can Draft His Son

The NHL is about to get its second Jack Hughes this spring. One is the current New Jersey Devils star center, while the other is the about-to-be-drafted son of Montreal’s new general manager. Jack Hughes is expected to be a top ten pick, currently sitting at number 7 on scout rankings of North American skaters.

Could Kent draft his son Jack? He will definitely be in the position to do so, but it’s unlikely. With Montreal sitting way below anyone else in the NHL’s basement (Montreal has a point percentage of .280 and the Arizona Coyotes are the only other team under .300), the Canadiens will most likely be picking earlier. If they stay the worst team in the league they are guaranteed a top three pick.

Related Story. The History Of The General Manager Position With The Canadiens. light

Maybe you’re one of those conspiracy theorists that think the draft lottery will be rigged for the one of the NHL’s most storied franchises? Maybe you think the NHL will right the draft lottery against them? Maybe Kent will want to draft his son Jack so much he will trade down? All we know is there’s other players Montreal wants to see as a future Canadien. The media is already rooting for Shane Wright to be a member of Les Habitants.