LISTEN: New Order of Canada member Dick Irvin has a 'feeling' about 2014 Habs

Broadcasting legend thinks back to '86, '93 Cup runs

Dick Irvin (left) with governor-general David Johnston.
Alison Sandor/CFRA

Legendary Habs play-by-play announcer and former CJAD mainstay Dick Irvin was named to the Order of Canada on Wednesday at a ceremony at Rideau Hall.

In an interview after the Ottawa ceremony, he told CJAD's Aaron Rand that the Canadiens' current playoff run has shades of the Canadiens' last two Stanley Cup triumphs, in 1986 and 1993, when stellar goaltending carried the Habs to unexpected championships.

"The last two times they won the Cup in '86 and '93, they weren't supposed to right? The Canadiens weren't supposed to be good enough to win the Cup, and both those years, they did." he says. "There was a feeling that started to develop as the playoffs moved along, sparked with a good goaltender named Patrick Roy.

"I kind of get the same feeling right now. Look out, it could happen."

Irvin's knowledge of hockey, and of the Montreal Canadiens, is encyclopedic. Dick Irvin was eight years old when his father, Dick Irvin Sr., became the Habs coach in 1940, and for the next 15 years got an up-close and personal look at the Habs' dynasty teams of the 1940s and 50s.

By the late 1960s, he was broadcasting Canadiens games, and began his long-standing run as a play-by-play announcer and analyst at Hockey Night in Canada.

He also served as sports director at CFCF-TV (now known as CTV Montreal), and as the host of the Bandstand program on CJAD.

Irvin contends Maurice Richard is the best player he's ever seen, and Guy Lafleur is the best player he's ever broadcast.

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