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The Montreal Canadiens roster offers few prospects

As Development camp opens For the Montreal Canadiens, the eyes of the media and fans returned to the ice to watch the decision-making process of establishing the NHL roster. In Montreal, although several key players have left due to trades, free agents or injuries, young people do not have much chance to occupy the NHL roster.

The development camp will provide us with some good indicators as to whether any player invited, drafted or trained can perform well enough to prove that they have the ability to play in the Canadian professional system or obtain a contract. .


Looking at the Canadians’ roster, there are not many vacancies. To be honest, there may only be two young players who can stand up and participate in the game. The first is the bottom six centers, and the other is the bottom paired defender.

Center opening

There are as many as three players competing for the six center forward roles. Returnee Jack Evans, rookie Ryan Pauline and rookie Cedric Paquette. With Jesperi Kotkaniemi flying to North Carolina, there are basically two center positions in the open game. Since any NHL coach is biased towards their veterans, because they are more predictable and consistent in the game, Paquette is likely to have seven years of NHL experience and a Stanley Cup ring.

Toronto Maple Leafs goalkeeper Frederick Anderson was shot by Ryan Bolling (Canadian Media/Graham Hughes) of the Montreal Canadiens

This leaves a place for Evans and Poehling in the open competition. Evans will have the advantage of playing under head coach Dominic Ducham last season and will show solid defensive acumen in some offenses. This means Poehling-the exemption exemption, which means he can be sent to the American Hockey League (AHL) without losing him due to the exemption-will have to be impressed in the training camp.

Poehling has the potential to impress people, and if that is the case, he might eventually make Paquette an extra skater. However, all this shows that any rookie is unlikely to occupy a position on these lists.

Blue line opened

On the blue line, there was an open competition for the third pair of players on the team. If Joel Edmundson is partnered with Jeff Petri and Alexander Romanoff has a chance to expand his role under the auspices of rookie David Savard, then Ben Chiarot will be on the right There is a vacancy.

Currently, Brett Kulak and Chris Wideman are the frontrunners of the Canadians’ defensive lineup. Both have NHL experience and brought some much-needed mobility and hockey movement skills. However, one of the defensive players in the camp had a chance to compete with them, Matthias Snowlind.The Swedish point guard is now with his Entry-level contract And will have the opportunity to enter the roster.

Rob Ramach said that Matthias Nolind is Montreal or Florence. Said he was a “suspect” fighting for a place with the Canadians.

With the addition of Mike Hoffman and Christian Dvorak, the Canadians seem to be struggling to become a more offensive team this season. These two top six players can score every season. There are 25 or more balls, and there is an opportunity to see up to 7 20-scorers, an ice hockey defender who can add strength to transitional games and power play. However, the prejudice against veterans will be difficult to overcome, and Nolind is likely to fail. But in the long run, another season to mature his game in the Swedish Hockey League may be better for his development.


The lack of vacancies on the NHL roster means that players will use training camps to prove that they are still capable of competing with NHL talent.This will make them Candidates called In case of injury.

The former leader of the training camp for this role is Jesse Ylonen. The young Finnish winger scored 9 goals and 17 points in 29 games with the Laval Rockets last season, playing both second-line and third-line roles. He showed great speed, composure on the ball and good defensive ability.

Anger to Ilonen-“He is expected to play some games in Montreal this year.”

Since the Canadians have deep wings on both sides, his expectation when entering his second professional season in North America is to take a step in his progress and be able to enter the NHL when needed. This can be seen as the quality improvement of Habers’ 2018 second round of selection and development.

Another player who can get the calling duty is Rafael Harvey Pinard, also known as Lavalag, because of the way he plays, just like Brendan Gallagher did in Montreal. , Every class goes all out. Harvey Pinard was one of only two Rockets players to wear every game last season-in these 36 games, he scored 9 goals and 20 points, in his rookie career Ranked fourth in the team during the season. It is this level of consistency and dedication that has won him this year’s opportunity. Having said that, he will not be able to crack the NHL list, just a phone call.


With Kotkaniemi being poached by the Carolina Hurricanes in the offer, it was agreed that the Canadians made the right choice at that moment, but this raised concerns about their prospects. The argument made is that they urge players to enter the NHL only to allow them to play a secondary role.

If you are not going to play Kotkaniemi, for God’s sake, let him go to Laval. Gold Miller and I said during a lot of criticism last year that he needs to put the ball on the club to develop his club skills. So give him ice hockey and plenty of ice time… let’s go…

This is where the NHL coach’s prejudice against veterans will become beneficial. Veterans are safe because the coaches they can provide are consistent. Young people may have higher skills, but they may also be unstable. In the past, young people like Kotkaniemi, and even Victor Mette, were able to enter the roster immediately when the team was exhausted and lacked enough veteran skills.

This season, the Canadians have both veterans, young returnees, and rookies with multiple seasons of professional experience competing for NHL positions. The organization has finally established a hierarchy in their development system, which makes it harder for rookies to enter the NHL. Over time, this will benefit the Canadians’ development system, forcing them to allow their young players, such as the 2020 first-round draft pick Kaedengur, to stay in the lower leagues and be physically and mentally in check before they enter. And skills development. NHL.

Kaiden Guhle Prince Albert Raiders
Kayden Guller of the Prince Albert Raiders celebrates the goal. (Lucas Chadley/Apollo Multimedia)

Although it can be said that not having a position for young people to immediately enter the NHL may be a bad thing for fans because they cannot watch their No. 1 pick immediately, but there is still something to be patient. Montreal has not had the patience and opportunity to properly train young people for some time, but this season, this will become their main tool to cope with the season. The use of free agents and increased trades for veterans this season not only helps to reduce the loss of key players, but it also forces management to rely on them instead of the young people in the system. For these reasons, on the opening day, an unexpected rookie hardly had a chance to enter the Canadians’ lineup.

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