In his role as assistant to the QMJHL player safety department, François Beauchemin will be well placed to assess the effects of the tougher rules against fighting.

A player will now be automatically suspended from their second fight of the season, from their first if they are found to be instigating the fight. The changes, it should be remembered, had been applauded by the political class, but players interviewed by La Presse last week seemed rather lukewarm.

“We, our job, is to reduce the bastards, the sticks, the cross-checks, the punches in the face, recalled Beauchemin. By eliminating fights, it may be up to us to tighten the screw for those blows. »

An argument often made by those who defended the status quo – an argument regularly made by Gary Bettman himself – is that fighting discourages dangerous blows and therefore helps prevent injury.

” I can not wait to see. I expect there may be a few more vicious hits. When the guys are going to have three, four, five games of suspension for a cross-check in the back or behind the head, they will perhaps understand that it must be eliminated from hockey. »

Obviously, you have to understand that despite the new rules, fights are still possible. Theoretically, they were also “banned” when they were only worth a five-minute penalty; only, the sanction was not severe enough to dissuade the players from dropping the gloves.

Despite the new rules, the referees will act as before when a fight breaks out. “It’s at their discretion. Some will go in to separate the players, others will let them go. But players will have to live with the consequences,” Beauchemin recalled.

On a completely different note, Beauchemin watched the last Stanley Cup Final with some interest. It is that his former teammate Brandon Montour almost led the Florida Panthers to great honors.

Beauchemin and Montour played together one season, in 2017-2018, the Quebecer’s last as a player, during Beauchemin’s third stay in Anaheim. At 37, he was paired with a 23-year-old who was playing his first full season in the NHL.

“We knew he had offensive talent, but he had an amazing season,” Beauchemin recalled.

Montour has indeed had a phenomenal season; he had 73 points, good for the 5th-ranked defenseman in the NHL, even though he had never reached 40 points in a season before. In the playoffs, Montour added 13 points, including 8 goals, in 21 outings.

Another former Ducks defenseman, Shea Theodore, wore the colors of the Vegas Golden Knights. In short, the palmipeds left a whole legacy to the NHL…

The team are now trying to rebuild their defense. This season, the defensemen par excellence of the three Canadian junior circuits, Tristan Luneau, Pavel Mintyukov and Olen Zellweger, are draft picks of the organization. “The future is in good hands!” “, rejoices Beauchemin, who worked three years as a development coach with the Ducks at the end of his career.

Anthony Beauvillier’s reaction to seeing the Avalanche Stanley Cup ring on Nicolas Aubé-Kubel’s finger said it all. “Tab***, the rock!” In Beauvillier’s defence, the jewel was massive; think of the ring Delima stumbles upon in Fred’s bowling ball, which was actually a gift from Arthur to Bertha, but we digress. Aubé-Kubel took advantage of the Beauchemin-Fleury-Beauvillier-Aubé-Kubel Golf Classic to show off his ring, won last year. However, life has quickly changed for the attacker since his conquest. In the summer of 2022, he joined the Toronto Maple Leafs as a free agent, but by early November he was on waivers, where the Washington Capitals claimed him. Aubé-Kubel therefore shared the locker room with Alexander Ovechkin in particular and he discovered a much more sociable teammate than he anticipated. “It’s Ovie. But it’s super simple. He brings his children to the arena, they sit with me and he translates. I was really surprised… Being Russian, I thought he would be more in his corner. But he’s loud in the locker room, he talks a lot. He’s a good leader. »

The Beauchemin-Fleury-Beauvillier-Aubé-Kubel Golf Classic, named for the four native hockey players from the Sorel region, took place on Friday. The purpose of the event was to raise funds “to finance various educational, technological and extracurricular projects at the Cégep de Sorel-Tracy”, reads the press release.