Stood still for the Canadian in 2019

Du surplace pour le Canadien en 2019

Nick Suzuki is one of the nicest surprises this season for the habs.

December 25, 2019 18h24


Stood still for the Canadian in 2019

Alexis Belanger-Champagne

The Canadian Press


MONTREAL — The Canadian has struggled over the last year.

Despite a clear improvement compared to 2018, the montreal just missed a participation in the playoffs in the spring of 2019. And the approach of the mid-term of the current campaign, the team was assembled by Marc Bergevin finds himself essentially in the same position – a competitive team with flaws that should fight until the end in the hope of sneaking into the tournament the end of the season.

An end in the tail of a fish

The Canadian remained in the race for the series until the very end of the spring of last year, not playing a single match without importance.

Two of the attackers the most talented of the team have known for seasons that are difficult, undermining the chances of the team participating in the series. Jonathan Drouin was first limited to seven points in its last 26 meetings, while Jesperi Kotkaniemi ran out of fuel and has totaled seven points in his last 23 outings. Kotkaniemi was even left behind three times by coach Claude Julien in the last right.

The Habs had also failed during some duels important at the end of the season. He has suffered defeats against two of his direct opponents, march 24, in the face of the Hurricanes of the Caroline, and then on march 28, in the face of the Blue Jackets of Columbus. He was eventually beaten to the finish line by two points with the Blue Jackets.

At the balance sheet of the end of the season, Bergevin martèlera that “this is only the beginning” for his team. Wishing to keep its core intact and maintain a certain depth, Bergevin will offer including contract extensions to forwards Nate Thompson and Jordan Weal, as well as defenders, Christian Folin, Brett Kulak and Mike Reilly.

A firecracker wet

May be unable to attract a free agent without compensation of large-scale, center Matt Duchene, Bergevin has attempted a big coup, on July 1st, in filing a hostile bid of five seasons with more than 42 million US $ in the center Sebastian Aho, Hurricanes.

Quickly, it was reported that the strength of the offer lies in the structure of the contract, since about half of the amount would be handed over in the first year, this could represent a budgetary problem for the formation of the Caroline.

The Hurricanes will not, however, prolong the suspense and announce the next day their intention to match the offer and retain the services of Finnish at the age of 21 years. In the conference call, the owner of the Hurricanes, Tom Dundon, stated that the operation of the Canadian will have been a waste of time” and will hear that Bergevin may be left handled by the agent of the Aho for it to obtain quickly the desired contract.

The acquisitions of Bergevin will eventually be relatively minor during the off-season. He will hire the guard reservist Keith Kinkaid, defenceman Ben Chiarot and forward Nick Cousins.

Same team, same result

“Madness is behaving the same way and expect a different result”, has already said the scientist Albert Einstein and this quote describes well the situation in Canada.

The team started the season 2019-20 with much the same group as the previous campaign, and it will present similar results.

Dated as of November 18, the Canadian had a record of 11-6-3 in 2018, and would then undergo a five-game losing streak. On the same date in 2019, the troops of Julian, had a record of 11-5-4 after having been subjected to the first of the eight setbacks in a row.

The comparison is still valid at the time of the Christmas break. In 37 games before the Holiday break last winter, the Habs had compiled a folder of 19-13-5. This time, he has a folder of 18-13-6.

The bet Bergevin was based on the confirmation of the previous season’s performance and the progress of the young players of the team. A dozen players had established personal highs in 2017-18 and the possible emergence of Kotkaniemi, Ryan Poehling and Nick Suzuki were to help the Canadian to take a further step in its growth.

However, Max Domi does not seem to be able to repeat the feats of his first campaign with the Habs, in which the projections are to 58 points after 37 games, after having experienced a season of 72 points last winter. Drouin had an excellent start to the season before suffering an injury to his left wrist in mid-November, which should keep him out of the game until mid-January.

Suzuki has a good start of career with 19 points in 37 meetings. However, Kotkaniemi has been slowed down by injuries and seems to have taken a step back with only five points in 22 games, while Poehling has seen his camp derailed by a concussion before being sold to the Rocket of Laval.

In addition, the adventure montreal Kinkaid was of short duration. Expected to ease the workload of Price, rather, it was subject to a runoff on December 2 and then demoted within the Rocket the next day, after just six outings, including five starts, with the Canadian.

If he wishes to avoid the odious miss the series for a third year in a row for only the third time since the inception of the NHL in 1917, the Tricolor will need to show more consistency over the next three months. It will also avoid the long series of defeats, like that experienced in November, while the parity in the NHL makes the margin very thin between success and failure.

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