Habs and Quebec politics collide: Premier Legault wonders if team should trade Carey Price and Shea Weber
MONTREAL -- Love him or hate him, Quebec Premier Francois Legault has shown during his 15 months in office that he is game to delve into topics of great controversy in Quebec - and the first days of 2020 suggest he won't be changing course this year,
On Friday, Legault publicly touched the real third rail of Quebec society: whether or not the struggling Montreal Canadiens should rebuild.
"Big challenge in 2020: Should we trade Price and Weber?" Legault tweeted Friday morning, adding the winking-face emoji that suggests playfulness (and also suggests Legault knows the Pandora's Box he's opening).
For the uninitiated, Price is Habs starting goalie Carey Price, who has had a challenging season that has mirrored the team's so far, and captain Shea Weber, who was named last week to the NHL All-Star-Game.
Price and Weber are arguably the team's biggest stars, and inarguably the team's biggest earners; combined they will count for more than $18 million against the team's salary cap this season and are both signed through the 2025-2026 NHL season.
Price and Weber are generally the two names that fans calling for a complete rebuild of the Habs target in terms of potential trades that could bring the team young prospects and draft picks. Those calls have grown this season as the team looks increasingly unlikely to make the playoffs again.
Whether or not the team should rebuild is a perennially polarizing subject and the responses to Legault's tongue-in-cheek tweet - which range from "Yes!" to "Stick to the politics" - suggest that's yet another reality that won't be changing courses this year.