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But longtime equipment manager, who has decided to retire, learned early lesson: “What happens in the locker room stays in the locker room.”

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Stu Cowan  •  Montreal Gazette Longtime Canadiens equipment manager Pierre Gervais (centre with blue windbreaker) is honoured by the team before the last game of the season against the Panthers at the Bell Centre on April 29, 2022. Photo by John Kenney /Montreal Gazette

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I have a poster on the wall of my home office from the last time the Canadiens won the Stanley Cup in 1993.

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The players are huddled at centre ice at the Forum with goalie Patrick Roy on one side of the Cup and head coach Jacques Demers on the other. Directly behind them is Pierre Gervais, who was the assistant equipment manager to Eddy Palchak at the time.

After this Canadiens season came to an end, I was looking at the poster and realized Gervais is one of only two people in that photo still with the team. The other is Pierre Ouellette, an assistant equipment manager who had a full head of hair back then.

Gervais first joined the Canadiens for the 1986 playoffs to assist Palchak, earning a promotion from the AHL’s Sherbrooke Canadiens a year after they won the Calder Cup. The Canadiens won the Stanley Cup in 1986, but Gervais didn’t get his name engraved on the trophy.

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His name was engraved in 1993.

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After five seasons with Sherbrooke, Gervais joined the Canadiens on a full-time basis for the 1987-88 season and replaced Palchak as head equipment manager in 1997. After 35 years with the Canadiens and 3,112 games, Gervais has decided to retire as equipment manager at age 60. He is under contract through June 30 and the plan is for him to remain with the team in a new position.

The Canadiens honoured Gervais in a pre-game ceremony before their final regular-season game — a 10-2 win over the Florida Panthers at the Bell Centre on April 29. Before the morning skate that day in Brossard, the Canadiens presented him with an all-terrain vehicle as a retirement gift.

After the game, Gervais received an ovation when he entered the media room and was handed a glass of champagne …….

Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/nhl/hockey-inside-out/stu-cowan-pierre-gervais-could-tell-35-years-of-canadiens-stories

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