Canadiens Weekly Recap – 12/12/22

Welcome to the Montreal Canadiens weekly recap, where we highlight all the past week’s articles and news from The Hockey Writers. If you missed a report, this is your chance to catch up on all the information, rumours and opinions by the Canadiens’ writing staff.

Canadiens Young Defenders Proving They Belong

The Canadiens have a big group of young rookie defenders in Arber Xhekaj, Jorden Harris, Kaiden Guhle, and Jonathan Kovacevic. So far, they have made an excellent impression – significant enough that general manager (GM) Kent Hughes would rather risk losing Rem Pitlick to waivers than send any of them to the Laval Rocket. The Hockey Writers looks at their play this season and how they have exceeded expectations.

Arber Xhekaj Montreal Canadiens
Arber Xhekaj, Montreal Canadiens (Photo by Francois Lacasse/NHLI via Getty Images)

Canadiens’ Rookie Defensemen Take Over

Canadiens Players are Not All Off to a Good Start

The Canadiens are off to a great start, and even though they are in a better spot than anyone anticipated, some players haven’t been doing as well as the team or fans hoped. The Hockey Writers looks deeper into three players underachieving this season and how it will affect any trades that may need to happen.

3 Canadiens Underachieving to Start Season

Canadiens Edmundson on The Trading Block

Canadiens’ Edmundson a Desirable Trade Target

With all the rumours that Josh Anderson could be moved, another highly sought-after player is defenceman Joel Edmundson. There have been many rumours of him being traded, and one of those that keeps coming up is a move to the Edmonton Oilers. This article looks at what Hughes might expect to get in return for Edmundson and how the deal may be worked out with the Oilers.

Latest News & Highlights

Canadiens Kovacevic Providing Solid Defence

Ryan Szporer took a deeper look into the performance of rookie Kovacevic, who has solidified the right side of the Canadiens’ defence with his consistent play. He has surprisingly allowed the Canadiens to regularly healthy scratch veteran defencemen Chris Wideman to let the other rookie defencemen like Xhekaj, Guhle, and Harris get added ice time and games.

Johnathan Kovacevic Manitoba Moose
Johnathan Kovacevic, Manitoba Moose (Jenae Anderson / The Hockey Writers)

Canadiens Stabilize Right Side on Defense with Kovacevic

Canadians Need to Decide if They Want Slafkovsky at the WJC

The World Junior Championship (WJC) is just around the corner, and many teams are loaning some of their age-eligible players to their respective countries to play in the tournament. One notable player being loaned to Team Canada is Seattle Kraken rookie Shane Wright; with this decision from the Kraken management, many wondered if the Canadiens should lend Juraj Slafkovsky to the WJC. Blain Potvin takes the side of not loaning him to Team Slovakia and explains why in this article.

Juraj Slafkovsky Montreal Canadiens
Juraj Slafkovsky, Montreal Canadiens (Photo by David Kirouac/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Canadiens Shouldn’t Let Slafkovsky Attend 2023 WJC

Canadiens Dach Starts at Center But Not For Long

The Canadiens started Kirby Dach at center against the Los Angeles Kings over the weekend with Sean Monahan out of the lineup. It wasn’t a bad start for him there, but with the team going down 2-0 early and not generating much offence, head coach Martin St. Louis ended up putting him back on the top line with Cole Caufield and Nick Suzuki. The Hockey Writers takes a deeper look into this development with Dach.

Kirby Dach Montreal Canadiens
Kirby Dach, Montreal Canadiens (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

Canadiens Can’t Get Discouraged Playing Dach at Center

Canadiens Slafkovsky Could Make Things Easier for Hughes

With tons of rumours swirling that Anderson could be traded before Christmas or near the trade deadline, Hughes will need a player to replace him. He may not have to look far, as the increased development of Slafkovsky and continual improvement could make it a little easier to move the enormous power forward to another team. With injured Habs returning to the lineup soon, Hughes will have to make a big decision in the coming weeks.

Josh Anderson Montreal Canadiens
Josh Anderson, Montreal Canadiens (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Canadiens Able to Trade Anderson with Slafkovsky’s Emergence

Those are the articles from The Hockey Writers this past week, but also check out some other pieces from around the internet. At Eyes on the Prize, they look at the Canadiens’ first-period starts and how they shoot themselves in the foot by falling back early in games. Also, as mentioned in quite a few The Hockey Writers articles, the Habs are in a lot of trade talks, and the group from Montreal Hockey Now goes over the many calls Hughes is getting.

Be sure to visit The Hockey Writers daily for more Canadiens news, rumours, and opinions from the excellent writing staff of Melissa Boyd, Blain Potvin, Ryan Szporer, and Trege Wilson.

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