Son, I've seen Guy Lafleur, I know Guy Lafleur, I've cheered for Guy Lafleur. You're no Guy Lafleur. But we want to like you.
The tits - Crash and bang. Shake and bake. He's blessed with size and strength and has the potential to become a real power forward. If he can find a place in front of the net, he's hard to move. He's not afraid of getting dirty in the corners and will lay out good hits when opportunity comes A Knockin'. Also, he is dating a Miss Canada contestant shown in the photo above. I think he can practice his skating drills on this girl's forehead. It's pretty big. He showed offensive promise when Higgins went down last year with an injury. He was promoted to the first line with Koivu and Ryder; at that point he had not yet registerd his first NHL goal. It took him a while to get it but when he did they came in bunches. In the end, he scored 16 goals in his rookie season.
The cellulite - He's not a great passer which leads to think that his vision on the ice hasn't fully developed. He seems to have had a hard time adjusting to the speed of the NHL game. He was a -20 last year, and came out a minus with every line he played on. His defensive coverage lacks intensity. So does his skating, so does his shooting, and so on, and so on, I miss those Sassoon commercials... In 2 exhibition seasons, this kid gave it all and had the fans begging for him to crack the roster. He hasn't really shown us that spark over the course of a full NHL regular calendar.
The armpit hair - See for yourselves (photo above)! He was 19 years old and playing lazy and spoiled. The fans want to adore this kid. But his game is often uninspired. He only came to play when promoted to the Koivu line. When shifted back to the fourth, he looked subdued. He will only do well in this league if he plays with passion. There was little sign of that last year. He may have God given talents that stand out in the juniors but as far as the pros go, get in line kid, there are a couple of guys ahead of you.
In the VIP Room - You could split Latendresse's inaugural NHL season into 3 parts: 1/3 on the fourth line. 1/3 on the first line. 1/3 playing with Maxim Lapierre and Alex Kovakev (was that the fourth line? the second? ???). He responded by giving us three different types of play. At his best with the no. 1 line, his dispassion was still evident. He looked overwhelmed in his first 25 games, only to settle into a quieter mold by season's end. Problem is, that's not what Guillaume Latendresse is about. We need to hear the noise. Of the puck cracking off his stick, of the boards rattling against his weight and that of the poor opposing player clasped between the two, of the fans in their seats in anticipation. A quiet Latendresse is a Latendresse out of character.
6.5 lap dances (out of 10) - He was heralded by the fans as the next young local hero due to the most aleatory coincidence: his first name, Guillaume, evolving into Guy and maturing into a full-body, roaring Guy! Guy! Guy! Quebec is starving for a Quebecois offensive star to love. The name fit the bill. It made little to no sense at all. But it is part of the dynamic that starts to thread the fabric that legends are made of. Only he will decide where the story goes.
Chez Parée bound? - He'll cut in line, and get in without paying cover which will infuriate everyone because we all know he should wait in the cold like the rest of us.
Signature Song - Invisible Sun. For a kid who was supposed to shine a bright light on the future of this organization, last season was one we all spent in the shade.
4 AM Smoked Meat Sandwich -
HF 10: If you close your eyes when the "Gui! Gui! Gui!" chants start coming down from the rafters, you can almost imagine it's the late seventies, the Habs are king, and some poor schmuck in the opposing net is in for a long night ... I'm sorry, what were we talking about?
HF29: If he takes up smoking, then we can chant Gui! Gui! Gui! Until then, he’s just another next Great French Hope.
Panger: He's not going to be a "power forward" in the Brendan Shanahan mould, but he's got size and a finishing touch. Let's just pray he doesn't get traded to Philly before he fulfills his potential like John Leclair before him. Wait, what we were talking about?