Saturday, September 21, 2013

Impressions on the Montreal Canadiens’ Training Camp Thus Far

BY: SHAWN LAVOIE (@SLavoie54)

First off, I was as surprised as anyone when I learned that Leblanc was cut by the Montreal Canadiens. I thought that he was having a decent camp, but as Therrien mentioned, Leblanc was going down early no matter what. Could he have been able to force the team’s hand by having an amazing camp? Maybe, but the team’s idea was already made. Some people are starting to write off Leblanc, but I still believe in the Pointe-Claire native to eventually develop in a decent third liner. To give himself better chances, the forward will need to develop some kind of specialty, like a PK specialist for example.

As for the other cuts, I was at first to see the likes of Reway and Hudon among the cuts, since they were impressive with their talent level. However, it’s logical that they were cut early since they would have never made the team.

Now, about the players that are still here, I had the chance to see the inter-squad scrimmage, see Monday’s game against Buffalo, and Wednesday’s practice. I can tell you that I would make room for Jarred Tinordi on the team. The kid has improved tremendously since last season. He is a much better skater, enough to keep up with most forwards, and is obviously stronger. So far, in my opinion, he looks much better than Murray and Drewiske, who are slated ahead of him in the depth chart.

Speaking of Murray, he is slow, reeeeeeally slow. I don’t know if he really has a lower body injury­­ – which could explain his turtle like pace – but I get the feeling that this is just a cover up because he is in the middle of trade talks since Tinordi has been outperforming him.

That or it’s Drewiske leaving, once he comes back from that injury he suffered in a weird accident with Bouillon.

Watch out for Galchenyuk. The 19 year old phenom is obviously bigger, stronger, and faster. His talent level is completely insane and he looks confident. Forget the sophomore jinx for him; he will have a great season.

Gallagher also won’t suffer from the sophomore jinx. He’s too much of a hard worker to see a decrease in his production.  Gallagher, Eller, and Galchenyuk could become the team’s top offensive line.

Andrei Markov looks much more comfortable on the ice now compared to last season. Having a full summer to work-out without rehabbing an injury has obviously helped him. He looks quicker and more agile, which can only be good news for the Habs. He still shouldn’t see more than 23 minutes of ice time per game, nor heavy penalty killing minutes, but he should still be the team’s best point producing defenseman after Subban.

Speaking of which, P.K. is a bull! During Wednesday’s practice, Subban and Galchenyuk would battler along the boards, and it was quite the thing to see. You could see their talent level on display, and I can tell you that both of these young franchise players won’t disappoint this season. Subban looks as quick as last year and stronger.

MichaĆ«l Bournival is very impressive this year so far. Scoring two goals against the Sabres is good way to impress, but it’s his work ethic and awareness that impresses. He always seems to know where to position himself and he isn’t shy to play the physical game. He may very well have taken Louis Leblanc’s spot on the depth chart and earn himself the right of being the first injury call-up this season.

Even though lots of people compliment McCarron’s game, and with good reason, he still has ways to go before being an NHL player. Yes he skates well for his massive frame, but he still kind of looks awkward on his skates. He doesn’t seem to have a fluid stride like Tinordi has, or his agility. He still has lots of work to do on his skating and his puck skills. However, he does seem to have good instincts on the ice and he uses his large body effectively. I’m looking forward to see how he fares when he goes back in the CHL.

Now let’s hope the Habs start winning some games.

(Photo by Clause Anderson/Getty Images North America)


Follow me on Twitter at SLavoie54

25 comments:

What I find amazing is if the Habs had trusted a couple of their draft picks like Tinordi and Bournival to make it, we wouldnt even needed Danny Briere or Murray, and saved all that money for a top six player with some size....Fronteac1

Another long disappointing season to look foward to in Habsland.
Remember how Easily a 7th seed like Ottawa disgarded the Habbies and their Fraud division winners, well add another Smurf in Briere, a goon in Parros that will fight and having us kill penalties all the time, and I don't mean to say Murray is slow but he's just getting home from the Habs last game.

As for that terrible scouting director Trevor Timmins , here's a test I would like to do, Montreal had Six high draft picks in the first Three rounds, so did Buffalo, let's see if Our top 6 become anywhere as good as the Sabres Ristolainen, Zadarov, Compher., Hurley, Bainey and Baptiste.

Carey Price is the Kohler toilet Bowl of goalies, You need one, but not at that Price.. And lately, his play has been full of s#@# too!!

HABS Have Another Bad Season. Go Bruins Go.

guy smith stick to football or baseball you must be American to think any of what you said have you ever watched a hockey its played with a stick not a bat just so you know!

I thought Guy Smith assessed the team fairly, HIO fans are the delusionalists. Gilles Poisson.

@Replay to Anonymous 8:27 P.M.
First, Based on your poor spelling, we can see you went to a Canadian school. Also, Didn't the Americans just win the World Junior Championship Gold medal this year..
Also, If memory serves me right, the last 20 Stanley Cups have been won by American based hockey teams. But don't fret, we will Still be sending you Canadians Postcards from the Parade.

In a recent poll conducted by Canadian pollsters, over 80% of parents up there don't want their kids participating in hockey programs. With Canadians now in the NHL dwindling each year, the NHL will Soon be less than 50% players from your country.

Finally, please do visit an article from ChicagoNow..."Why moving to Canada is such a Horrible idea" Have a nice day.

Hey Mr. American have some class.......make that the last 19 cups, but does it make a difference where the Stanley Cup team is from when over 1/2 of the players are from CANADA! Where did you pick up your stats about parents not wanting their kids to play hockey; from an American source? C'mon bud, are you kidding me.....Hockey is Canada's game!! You Americans love trying to antagonize us Canadians, but for the most part we do end up winning a lot more championships than the USA. Let me guess, your favorite talk show host is Jim Rome. Anyways, enough ranting....Go Habs Go!!!! + Go Canada Go!!!!

Oh man, the ignorance here is painful. Despite this I love my American brothers, and I am sure the good majority of them love their Canadian brothers. To insult someone you have never met before, especially when they are cut from the exact cloth that you are, is hurtful to say the least. We are all passionate about hockey, but grow up guys! This is childish.

Cantadian at Sept 24th, @4:39 PM..

Speaking of Ignorance, which is a common trait of Canadians, if you Look with those Stupid eyes on yours, the First Insult was from one of your countrymen yesterday at 8:27 pm to Guy Smith, whoever he is.
Second, the Habs won the Cup in 1993, his is 2013...Add that up and I get 20 Years, guess Math is also a problem with you losers.

And who cares about the NHL being a little over 50% Canadians, as Brett Hull , Gretzky and others proved, they lived here, played here and Hull even dissed your country and became an American..

Notice how Your players all Leave Canadian based teams for USA..

Sorry abuut my previous comment today at 12:55 PM. After careful consideration, I now realize that the United States under that great commissioner Gary Bettan has taken over our sport. We produce many of the stars in the NHL, thanks to Midget and Junior hockey programs that cost millions of dollars, with parents often Sacrificing both time and money to play the sport. Some eventually get good, make the big time , alot play for Vancouver, Toronto, Edmonton, Calgary, Montreal, Ottawa and Winnipeg. Many of them then decide what we all know up here, the Taxes are too High, there are language and soetimes cultural differences, the Media is often intrusive. Ask one Saku Koivu, former Captain of the Habs, having a nice dinner in a Montreal restaurant with his wife, and lo and behold, He is Asked to speak French in the restaurant. How sad is that..No Wonder the Gretzkys, Messiers, Chelios, Langway, star after star decide to leave Canada and play in great American cities..Being contenders for the Cup. making more money, nicer weather, Poor Poor Cantadians...ps We should also stop slaughtering baby seals.

LMAO Only because it's so true. lol.

This is a hockey Website, not a political Website, go argue elsewhere!

Macleans article...."Is hockey becoming America's game"..
Canadian site with that article. Great reading.

What the hell is wrong with you guys. Suddenly being traded from one city to another is a sign of being upset at Canada. What about the opposite where guys like Gionta ultimately decide to head north.

No cups for Canadian teams, dude half the roster is made of Canadian players.

But what the hell does any of this have to do with the Habs roster.

@Bryan Willey..Gionta has done next to Nothing with the Habs, except be a Smurf and get injured. Thanks for making my point for me.

Willey, It's more being traded from a Canadian city (or town there) to an American city..You missed the point dude, and it's very important as almost all the better free agents leave Canadian teams for American based ones. Twenty Cups in a row proves it.

I agree with Bryan Willey, the Habs roster will continue to be second rate free agents or over the hill players that will get more money from the Habs because the taxes in Quebec are astronomically high, there is the French vs English problems and the media in Montreal keeps any players away.

Lol my article has 18 comments, and none of those is about the article itself!

Lol my article has 18 comments, and none of those is about the article itself!

Im guessing some people are commenting simply to see their words since the argument is irrelevant.

Let's throw opinion out the window here and talk about facts:

1) There is a salary cap
2) There are only 7 Canadian Teams
3) Currently 53% of the NHL is Canadian players

So let's see, 23 man rosters X 30 teams means 690 players in the NHL of which an maximum of 160 can play in Canada assuming a 100% Canadian roster for Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.

Next let's discuss the top Canadians in the game right now. How many of the top players in the game, born in Canada are playing for a another US team other than the original team that drafted them?

Quick answer would be Ribeiro, Rick Nash, Thornton (who's been in SJ forever).

SO yes it would be great to have Crosby, Stamkos, Staal, Weber and every other Canadian player play on the habs but there are too many Canadian players, a cap which prevents it and the stars of this league almost never make it to free agency.

But keep fighting that one out in an absolutely useless argument.

And Zero Stanley Cups for Canadian based teams since 1993..But keep fighting That one out in an absolutely useless arguent.

Larek here from Habfans.com Guy Smith said it best!!

23 percent of the teams are Canadian would you please shut up guy smith and again hockey players use sticks not bats

Lol, Twenty Three percent of Nothing..Is ..Nothing..
Check out the site..Hockey Inside Out, Parros gets green light top article, I thought the two guys next to him were his Sons, guess what. They are two Teammates. lol Man, is that small.

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