The Montreal Alouettes are mired in the team’s worst season since they returned to La Belle Province in 1996. We all know that. In a city where the CFL is not king, where a good on-field product is paramount to strong attendance and television ratings, 2017 has been a forgettable season, to say the least.
As fans (and maybe even the players) can’t wait for the season to wrap up, general manager Kavis Reed has done nothing to give Als fans hope that good times are right around the corner. In a radio interview on Oct. 11 with TSN 690’s Mitch Melnick, Reed spouted several cliche answers and offered no specifics for beleaguered Als backers.
Spouting catch phrases and repeating the same answers to varied questions, Reed sounded like someone who simply doesn’t understand the Montreal market. You have to give hope. You have to point to indicators. And most importantly – you have to give them a reason to care.
Instead, we heard Reed say that he is excited about the progress shown this season. Only, he wouldn’t provide specifics or name players.
More than once he said that he’s seen great improvement in the locker room. Except that the game is played on the field. What the heck does that mean, anyway? Did the locker room get a new coat of paint? Are players getting better at card games before they get dressed for the game? So bizarre.
Then again, what should we expect of Reed? After all, this is a guy that was merely head of the Alouettes special teams last year, only to then take the role of GM, essentially becoming the boss of his former boss: the now fired Jacques Chapdelaine. Only in the CFL.
Another item that I found curious during this interview was when Reed mentioned how he is trying to build a winning culture, as though the Jim Popp culture didn’t produce results, ever. Not only was that disrespectful, but it was misguided as well. Sure, the Popp reign appeared to have an expiration date. But a lot of great things were accomplished.
Montreal CFL fans need details, and they need them now. You can’t gloss over failure with a vague collection of sayings. Rather, you have to point to concrete examples of why fans should slowly start making their way back to Molson Stadium – particularly when the team’s former boss, Popp, is preparing for the playoffs in Toronto.
I’m not sure if Kavis is being instructed by ownership to give as little detail as possible about what is going on with this season’s edition of the Alouettes or not. But if so, then he’s doing a masterful job.
Montreal is a mercurial sports market. The Canadiens are off a season with an early playoff exit and they’re off to a slow start this year. The result? Some tickets were actually available for last Saturday’s Habs-Leafs game. So you can only imagine how perilous the position of the Alouettes will be if they start next season as poorly as this season has gone.
In a post-Anthony Calvillo era where success isn’t a given anymore, Alouettes fans are looking for any little positive (both on and off the field) to latch onto, and Kavis Reed must do a better job of delivering.
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