Rabid Habs

The Forum: Let’s Talk About Mario Tremblay

On Monday, former Habs player and coach and current television and radio personality Mario Tremblay went on the radio and said that Alex Galchenyuk has been to detox on two separate occasions. Our contributors had some thoughts.


Kyle Roussel (@kyleroussel) – For a guy who has had his own issues, this is gross. Sure it might help to explain why Galchenyuk is struggling, but we have no right to know these personal details. There’s a reason why the whole process is supposed to be 100% confidential. Now, with this out in the news it may reduce the chances that another player with addiction issues reach out for help lest he be outed and dragged through the mud.

Tremblay was a shitty coach, a shitty media member, and, as it turns out, an unscrupulous knob. He ought to have his media credentials revoked. Shame on him.

Sean O’Neill (@TheONeillFactor) – To play devil’s advocate for a second, it’s not as if rumours along these lines hadn’t been circulating in the darker corners of Habsdom for a while now.

Still…there’s a massive difference (both ethically and substantially) between unsubstantiated gossip-mongering and the kind of stunt Tremblay pulled. It shouldn’t come as a shock, I suppose, given that Tremblay has built a career out of exactly this type of lazy, sensationalist, mud-dragging libel and slander, but this is still a new-low for one of the Montreal media’s most loathsome creatures.

In a larger context, this is also Exhibit 1,768,343 in why free agents and prospects aren’t exactly lining up to play for the Habs….yes our history is glorious and the ghost of Howie Morenz is mighty enticing and the 24 banners give you goosebumps and blah blah blah but the fishbowl that is the Habs media market, and the apparent complete lack of boundaries that our media feels the need to respect, make the whole damn thing a slog.

Ian Boisvert (@BoisvertIan) – From a Canadiens standpoint, this is just another drop in the bucket of garbage “journalism” that has existed about as long as I can remember. Whether it’s Galchenyuk’s personal life or stalkers in black hoodies taking photos of Steven Stamkos when he’s in town, Sean is right. It’s so easy to blame the high taxes for Montreal’s inability to draw in free agents, but if a player really wanted to play there, the tax thing is easy to get around. People don’t want to play here because the environment off the ice (and sometimes on the ice) is among the most toxic environments in the league, if not the most toxic.

But all of that is almost trivial when you get down to the real issue at stake here, and that’s the health of human beings. I listened to Marc Bergevin’s impromptu presser on Wednesday, and he was asked to comment on the report. Bergevin basically said that every player in the league is given resources to deal with substance abuse and it is entirely confidential. The team is never notified of issues like this, and to be honest, it’s none of their damn business. If a player goes to get help on their own voluntarily, no one should know about it unless the player wants them to know about it.

If everything Tremblay said is true, and Galchenyuk did seek help for an abuse issue, the trust created by confidentiality is completely destroyed. Why would a player ever go and get help again knowing that scum like Tremblay will just let the world know about their problems? You know what happens? We see a lot more Zack Kassians who are forced into the NHL’s substance abuse program after potentially life threatening incidents. That’s not what anyone should want, but that seems to be Tremblay’s goal; to scare players into staying silent about their issues. This confidential resource may be one of the smartest things the league has from an HR standpoint, and Tremblay may have just destroyed it in yet another desperate reach for attention.

And if none of it is true, I hope Galchenyuk takes Tremblay to court.

Pat Wallis (@a_carl1n) – While Tremblay was the first to broach the subject, there were other journalists who picked it up and asked Galchenyuk and Bergevin about it directly. That, to me, is what makes this situation so shameful. It is telling of how much self-respect these people have that they would behave no better than the paparazzi.

It seems that some of the Montreal media wants to portray NHL players as public figures akin to elected officials whose private decisions could arguably impact the public’s voting choice. This is obviously not the case. The members of the press who chose to report this, including Tremblay, chose the cheapest, trashiest, laziest route to meet their quota of “news” content.

Their actions serve no benefit to anyone but themselves. This does not help the team, the player, nor the audience. The human beings whose lives are being publicly discussed seem to be a non-factor in their decisions.

On top of all of this, their decision to publicly discuss rumours of a player’s substance abuse issues and treat them as fact is 100% in conflict with the NHL’s own policies. As Marc Bergevin confirmed in his press conference yesterday, there could be 1 or there could be 20 members of the Canadiens organization that are a part of the NHL’s substance abuse program. He is not privy to that information due to the program’s confidentiality rules.

The NHL and the NHLPA should back up their players here and condemn those members of the media contradicting these confidentiality policies. They should inform the employers of the members of the press who have shown such poor judgement that those individuals are no longer invited in the locker room or any other access to the team. These shit-stains-for-brains add no value to anyone’s enjoyment of the sport.

Ian Boisvert (@BoisvertIan) – In other news, “shit-stains-for-brains” is my new stand-in name for Tremblay.

One Comment

  1. Trevor

    October 26, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    Trembley truly is a sad and bitter sack of shit. He definitely should have his credentials and media access removed. He’s done enough damage to this organization and should be publicly shunned and renounced.