Canadiens look to invite world poker champ and avowed fan Duhamel to game

MONTREAL – After winning nearly $9 million at the World Series of Poker, Jonathan Duhamel may soon be made guest of honour by his favourite hockey team—the Montreal Canadiens.

A team spokesman said Tuesday that Duhamel will be invited to attend a game and take a bow at the Bell Centre in the near future to help celebrate his stunning poker victory.

The Boucherville, Que., native, an avowed Habs fans, had dozens of friends clad in the Canadiens red, white and blue jerseys in the crowd in Las Vegas as he finished first in the World Series final round over the weekend to pocket $8.94 million.

Duhamel, 23, has said he would donate $100,000 of his earnings to the Canadiens children’s foundation.

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It would be the largest gift ever to the charity. The auction of former coach Guy Carbonneau’s lucky playoff tie fetched $100,000, but part of that went to another cause.

“That was pretty cool,” Canadiens goalie Carey Price said of Duhamel’s win. “Not many people get a opportunity to win something like that.

“I don’t play much, but I’ve played some poker and I know it can be long. I don’t know how long it took but those were some busy days for him, I’m sure. And I’m not putting any of my money against him, that’s for sure.”