Hello friends and welcome to episode 5 of Canadiens Time this is a very interesting time in Canadians land as we are on the verge of the draft which means for all of us soon draft talk will be ending which for many of us will probably be a relief but that is not yet the case and so to begin things we have more draft talk to get into as it was done thanks to Bob McKenzie and his draft list the debate over Wright vs Slafkovsky once again ignited like a rocket firing off into space and off we went and the debates raised among the punditry and fisticuffs were thrown and it was just fun fun fun and I think with all the wildness I think everyone is missing the key point that with the rumors that are being spread we must keep calm and rational and not not just jump to conclusions and Shane Wrights a witch I saw it, I saw it. Shane Wrights a Witch! okay so let’s just keep calm.
Anyway Locked on Canadiens 647 had on David st. Louis to talk about who the Canadiens might draft with the 26th and 33rd pics or some sort of you know if they traded up a bit and his opinion was that Wright will be better in 5 years then Slafkovsky and also the discussion was over tactics and Scott Matla noted that if you draft Wright earlier in the draft with one you get the center that the Canadiens definitely need and that gives them the flexibility with say the 26 pick to draft whatever they want but if they pic Slafkovsky they then really have to draft a center at 26 and or they have to trade up. This some made st. Louis noted that Owen Beck might be a good target in that case. He he knows he doesn’t have the same upside as Wright might have but his production doesn’t reflect how good he is. I’m just paraphrasing a bit of his information I urge you to listen to Locked On Canadiens 647. A ton of information about a ton of great prospects up from St Louis. So Beck is also super mature, he has a great defensive game and can rapidly switche his assignment and there’s a ton more information about Beck on that program. Also St Louis mentioned that with the 26th and 33rd picks so close together it would be a logical strategy to go high risk high-upside for one of the pics and then stay safe on the other. Also it has been sort of speculated that why don’t the Canadians make a splash and trade the first pick and the Habby Hour crew raise the question and said well what would be worth that like is David Auger said quite bluntly well you know “who is worth the first?” you know what could you get for that and as Beth chimed in we know we want your Arena and three players and I think that is a fair fair value for the first pick in the draft. What otherwise are you going to send to the Canadiens that would be worth that first pick. It’s really gotta be quite a haul and I don’t…I haven’t heard in the rumor mill and we we have a lot of rumors flying around what that would be that the Canadiens would get for a first-round pick
In other discussion of the Wright versus Slafkovsky matter and I other and other prospects Habs Unfiltered great-great podcast 263 had on Byron Bader who runs Predictive Draft Analytics which uses a model of league equivalencies and goes back thirty years and uses this model that I don’t entirely understand but it’s a model and statistics and and and in any way they they do what they do. He found that looking at his rankings which is not a ranking of what he believes teams will do but is there just a ranking of prospects he actually ranks of Slafkovsky at 16 and provided a fascinating explanation of well as why on that program and I and I cannot paraphrase it well so I’m going to have to leave it on that podcast for you to check out if you’d like to but it it was based on the data that was there that Bader decided that Slafkovsky is not ranked where you would expect for the pick and the the Cooley, Wright however we’re ranked very close to each other at very high and but Wright was in Bader’s eyes Bader would take Wright over Cooley and he believes that even if he he would hit here even if he’s hit a 2 2C ceiling he might actually get to 1C in Baders opinion so that’s that’s a good endorsement of Wright based on his analysis from his side of things so there’s there is more data coming in from that and now just as just as a note now I in my previous podcast was for drafting Shane Wright. I am for Shane Wright. The…I’ve pulled two podcasts that just happen to have analysts that are for Shane Wright. There are other experts who are not for Shane Wright and so they have their own their own perspective they are looking at their own information their own Scouts so I am leery of being cherry-picking it’s just so happening that the podcast that I listen to and these are the sources that I generally listen to as this is the pool and information I draw from each week this is just what’s coming out of it. It’s if if on one of these podcasts Slafkovsky was getting endorsements I would pass it along it’s just these are the sources and it’s not coming out of there so that’s just sort of the the the the issue so I mean now full disclosure so I don’t have a Recrutes subscription so I haven’t consulted that data point and obviously recruits and Grant McCagg is a major Slafkovsky supporter so I don’t have that information and there are going to be other sources that are going to be pro Slafkovsky so it’s it’s that’s out there this is just what the data is that I have in front of me.
A few other pieces of information out there from some articles that came out Patrick Bexell or Bexell so I’m not sure the pronunciation there apologies for not knowing that did a profile of Jonathan Lekkerimaki. So Lekkerimaki is suspected of being a Canadiens Target is based on basically because they took him to dinner so but none the less that’s a thing and there’s a just a very detailed profile on Habs Eyes on the Prize that I urge you to look at
Sebastian High of A winning Habit put together five players the Canadiens will be wise to target after round one of the NHL draft. I’m personally a Noah Warren fan so I just >? another article where is checking
And Patrick Lortie of a Winning Habit mentioned that the Canadiens would be wise to look in their own backyard in later rounds of the draft and what this means is that the Canadiens have over time not been drafting from the QMJHL which is a surprise to me and I’m relatively recent to the fandom so I’m not going to be an expert of these things but I would be shocked if that’s the case you would think that would be something the Canadiens would make an effort to do and this piece advocates for why they should be actually doing it and I agree.
Turning to a non-canadiens issue for the moment before delving back into <> that matter though it is a Canadienes matter. The Hockey Hall of Fame announced their class coming up and once again there are two things that are wrong with the situation number. One the Hockey Hall of Fame has an arbitrary rule that only two women can be selected in every class. That’s arbitrary and stupid. The second thing is they once again selected only one woman from this list. Now there are I mean the amount of qualified women to go into the Hall is enormous and they insist upon not using both slots and everyone focused on why won’t they everyone but I mean when they say everyone it’s it’s a figure of speech but hockey Twitter noted that Carolyn Ouelette…Ouelette sorry for just stumbling on that I just sometimes can’t speak should have been in easily. Her resume is just I mean immaculate and the fact that she was not chosen in in Scott Matla’s words on Locked on Canadians kind of “cheapens the hall” of Fame and it does and um there and she is not the only candidate that is easily somebody that should be in the Hall of Fame and they the Hall of Fame has also traditionally not chosen anyone from over seas just focusing on the U.S. and Canada and that’s also just that means there’s absolutely no reason for that there this is clearly a major major problem and it it’s sort of it and I think we can attribute it to an old boys club man mentality coming out of there and it just it’s not right and also an interesting point about about this is that Laura Saba on Locked on Canadians said that it feels like the voting process is passionless and I think that should be explored as well that there may be structural problems with how the Voting is even conducted into getting people into the Hall and that’s all I’ll say about that but I mean a lot of people were rightfully upset about this and it’s just it just keeps happening.
Turning back to the Montreal Canadiens Ryan Szporer of The Hockey Writers put together a piece that was very good looking at Canadien strengths and weaknesses as the team now stands now. Of course they’re going into the draft where they can have obviously address things and he could include it that their biggest areas were Center and right defense and that’s and that’s going to be even more affected should Jeff Petry get traded and of course there’s also uncertainty with goaltender since no one knows where Carey Price is going to end up but the center position of course can be addressed in the draft quite easily if they draft Shane Wright and even if they don’t draft Shane Wright they still have the ability to draft centers in the first round. Right defenses another area where they could draft players though the defense right defense has not been getting as much attention in the draft.
The the…but the interesting thing about the defense is that an in this is in the transitions into another article is Ken McMillan for A Winning Habit wrote about what he called the delicate dance on defense for next season and this goes into great detail about how the Canadiens have to be very careful about how they set themselves up because they have a group of NHL ready fenders, they have a pile of incoming AHL Defenders but if they shore up the NHL or AHL by bringing in any more defenders which may be wise because they have a lot of young young Defenders that that may take away slots for the young players and push some of them into the ECHL which may affect their development so it’s a very delicate structure and of course that depends on ah is Petry going to make into still be with the be with the Canadiens or is he going to be traded and and then what is going to be the status of Corey Schuneman and there’s a few other for AHL deenders who have not been re-signed yet but could be re-signed. But it and again a very key question when you have such a young defensive corps you may want to bring in some just older defenders to be veterans veteran talent, veteran talent and that’s just a key question of how you you just there’s just so many defenders in place so that that’s a that was a really really solid article and I really suggest reading that one.
Speaking of young talent. So turning to the prospect there and speaking of defenders no less. There was a nice discussion of where some might end up on Locked On Canadiens and one of them is where Kaiden Guhle might end up who just recently finished up his Memorial Cup duties and Laura Saba believes that Guhle might spend the year in Laval and should and Scott Matla phrased it very interesting in he said that Guhle has the most NHL ready but maybe the one you have to be more careful with and I found that very interesting quote um but that is sometimes true that that as I sorta stumbling over my words here that sometimes you don’t want to rush a prospect and hurt their development. The uh Matla went on to notice that the notice Matla went on to note I did it again Harris and Baron who we’ve seen NHL last season have shots to make the NHL but it’s a crowded space and he warned the urge people not to panic if defensive prospect start in the AHL and as the article I just referenced mentioned them in a lot of them are going to start the NHL the there is and there’s more details in that episode about like for instance Joshua Roy he he’s going to get the shot to be in the NHL lineup but if not he’s goes back to juniors and there’s been a lot more prospect than a lot of prospect discussion this week.
Marco D’Amico talked about how Roy, Guhle and and Sean Farrell have made strides of this past season. Farrell had 28 points in 24 games at Harvard. He had six points in four games in Beijing and six points in nine games at the world championships. Sean Farrell of course because he’s he’s still in the NCAA college game is not getting as much attention as the players that are actually in the Montreal Pipeline and Ken McMillan had three prospects who could force their way in the Habs lineup and noted that Roy and Guhle could very well do that but again there’s the question of will Roy do that in his in the early season or will he end up back in juniors and will Guhle make it or will he be down in a AHL and also noting that is Rafael Harvey Pinard who’s been a common voice or commonly mentioned as a key player who could make it after a great year at the AHL.
And also of course the Memorial Cup did wet wrap up. The Hamilton Bulldogs fell to the Saint John Sea Dogs so Jan Mysak and Arbor Xhekaj did not win the title but Mysak did have a goal in that final game. There was a Sportsnet article that had some just some thoughts scouting thoughts on Guhle, Mysak, and Xhekaj and one of these one of the quotes was about Xhekaj and it says “Arber is a big, strong, two-way defenceman. Hes 6-foot-4, 205 pounds, mobile, tough, and he moves the puck efficiently to chip in with some secondary offence.” and there was some mixed thoughts on Guhle the article said “I did feel like Guhle was trying to do too much at times and his detail suffered overall. He found himself above the puck occasionally in his zone and forced some plays in the offensive zone. Having said that he is an elite skater who is highly competitive and can be deployed in a variety of roles. Hes a Grade A prospect who could end up being a top pairing NHL defenceman in time.” So some some endorsements of Kaiden Guhle there.
In some more just just some more news the minor league signings the three players signed with Laval Rocket according to A Winning Habit. Two Defenders Oliver Galipeau, Santino Centorame Centorame I could have been sent to ROM apologies for that and Winger Anthony Beauregard or Anthony Beauregard. The Defenders may end up with the Lion though as mentioned before there’s only so many players only so many spots and knows those players were not mentioned in the in the overall dance that was going on. The Lions also signed Cedric Montminy and Matthew Broderick, And that was cord to Andrews Zadarnowski of Habs Eyes on the Prize.
And in another more joyful news Habs Director of Goaltending and domestic abuser Sean Burke has departed the team to go to Vegas and the Habs Locked on Canadiens Habs Locked on Canadians crew… wondered what mark did he actually leave on the organization and what did he do? (Laughter) it’s I’m laughing because they’re like yes what what did he accomplish another coach is that if it’s their mark has been very much more known and that is an indictment and to quote Beth of the Habby Hour “Goodbye motherfucker.”
In other personnel news Luke Richardson of defensive coach of the Montreal Canadies has taken the Chicago hockey team head coaching job. This will of course open up the defensive coach position when the defunse defense defense is very much in flux so who they bring in will be very critical at a time when they’re going to have a lot going on.
Some more fun discussion on Locked on Canadiens to the mailbag and they talked about who should be on the Suzuki-Caufield line and based on who was on the team right now Laura Saba thought it would be Jesse Ylonen, and Matla thought it would be Evgenii Dadonov. But also noted the spot could be up for grabs and was fine with Ylonen on being on the line too. I found that found about it at to be interesting what is what what also is noted is that that did not include Josh Anderson and I think I agree with that I think you don’t put Josh Anderson on that line I don’t think Josh Anderson works that was also thoughts noted on Twitter by Ian Boisvert of The build. It’s just you got to got to put somebody else on that line I’m leaning more to Dadonov but Ylonen has a lot of talent. Just I just thought I’d note it’s just interesting.
And of course Lehky has won the Stanley Cup in Colorado and as the Habby Hour noted Lehky’s dad was covering the game. It’s just it’s just wholesome just some wholesome moments you gotta gotta to take the wholesome moments when you can in this just messed up world we live in.
Another rumor according to Ken McMillan who reported what Rick Dhaliwal reported there the Habs might be interested in Michael DiPietro a goalie in the Vancouver system who was apparently terrific at World Juniors, won a Memorial Cup in 2017 he’s posted relatively solid numbers in the minor leagues. I I don’t really know what to make of this I mean I’m sort of I’m tempted to be like he’s just some guy but maybe maybe I’ll be pleasantly surprised and probably being unfair but that’s just could be interesting if he’s another player brought into the goalie fold.
Also couple of Lockdown Canadiens mailbag questions which I want a relay cuz they were very funny to me they were there they talked about what the right number of coffee mugs is. The right number of coffee mugs is of course the number of coffee mugs that you have and I heard urge you to listen to the program listen to their program number 645 because they had the Habs versus The Muppets and that is classic podcast material right there and I’m not going to tell you what they said cuz I want you to listen to it but that is just classic podcast material alright I’ve talked enough. Shane Wrights a Witch.