Montreal boasts an exciting calendar of events this year, giving you the perfect opportunity to follow young and aspiring athletes as they break through the barriers of the sporting world.
For anyone who follows Major League Soccer, the 2017 Canadian Championship is right around the corner. As Montreal Impact progress through their season, fans will be expecting their squad to make an appearance in the Championship finals against Toronto FC. First, they will have to defeat the Vancouver Whitecaps over the two-round semi-finals on May 23rd and May 30th. Toronto, meanwhile, play Ottawa for their chance to make the finals.
If Montreal Impact do make the finals, one of the rounds will take place at the Saputo Stadium on either June 20th or June 27th. This will be the perfect opportunity for locals to watch athletes like Quebec midfielders Patrice Bernier and Ballou Tabla, as well as forward player Anthony Jackson-Hamel dominate the pitch. If Montreal win, they will also play Toronto in a playoff for a place in the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League.
This year's Stanley Cup is sure to sadden Montreal Canadiens fans' hearts. The team has scooped the prestigious ice-hockey trophy a total of 24 times, as well as making the final a further 10 times, but this year they lost out in the Eastern Conference to the New York Rangers, and are out of the NHL Playoffs.
Before you drown your sorrows too much, the Montreal Alouettes are a team to watch this season in the East Division of the Canadian Football League. They last won the Grey Cup back in 2010, but a superstar squad of Canadian athletes such as left back Chris Ackie and full back Jean-Samuel Blanc, as well as a whole line up of North American and international talent are pushing the Alouettes towards more victories. They play the Roughriders on June 23rd, but if you want to catch a live game, watch the double against rivals Toronto Argonauts on the 12th and 19th of August.
If you are looking for a more downtempo sport, 888 Poker is bringing one of their greatest live tournaments to Montreal from June 16th – 20th this year. The event will be held at the Playground Poker Club, and buy in for the main tournament will be $550 CAD. There will also be former NHL players in attendance, including Guy Lafleur, so anyone who is still annoyed about the Canadiens’ Playoff performance can take solace here.
Thankfully, the tournament finishes well in time for the Montreal Jazz Festival, which takes place from June 26th – July 5th. We know it's not a sporting event, but it's a sure thing for anyone's calendar. Over 3000 artists will perform at 650 concerts, many of which are free outdoor events. The event is expected to attract over 2.5 million visitors.
Another major event on the Montreal Calendar is the Rogers Cup, held at the Uniprix Stadium on August 4th – 13th. The talk is all on rivals Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, but there are some solid Canadian entries this year, including Milos Raonic and Vasek Pospisil. There aren't many black Canadian tennis players on the bill, but if you want to see an aspiring star then look out for Francoise Abanda. She is currently playing in the French Open. The finals of the Rogers Cup will be held on August 13th.
Finally, if you are looking for something a little different this year, check out the World Artistic Gymnastic Championships, which are held in Montreal from October 2nd – 8th this year. Over 500 gymnasts from all over the world will take part.