The Montreal Canadiens will soon announce the leader of their new analytics department is Christopher Boucher, according to Marc Antoine Godin of The Athletic. The data-crunching guru will serve as director of analytics in Montreal and is the first hire in a department that Jeff Gorton and Kent Hughes have promised to implement since arriving with the Canadiens.
Officially a pro scout with the San Jose Sharks for the past two years, Boucher is well-known as an early advocate of hockey analytics and a seminal member of the early days at Sportlogiq, one of the leading data firms for the sport. While the hire seems strong, perhaps more important is that the Canadiens are going down this route at all.
Under previous administrations, the team had limited their analytical departments, something that the new managers vowed to change as they took over. In one of his first interviews after getting the job, Gorton told Sportsnet that the organization had “a little bit of an old-school feel” and that there needed to be a “different way of thinking” as they tried to modernize the front office. Bringing in Boucher to lead a new analytics department is one of those changes, though it still remains to be seen how much influence they will have over Hughes or the coaching staff.