Drouin suffered an ankle sprain earlier this month and has tried to play through it for the most part but clearly, it has been decided that the best course of action was to let him sit out. That being said, since his return, Drouin has done very little to help the Canadiens. He's played 8 games, has no points, a -10 rating and he's taken 7 shots. Meanwhile, Charles Hudon has been doing well in Laval. He was the sole Rocket representative at the AHL's All-Star Game and has 35 points (including 27 goals) in 46 games in Laval.
If you remember at the end of last season, Hudon was in tears when he met with the media clearly thinking that the writing was on the wall for him with this organisation having only played 32 games during the whole season. This year, he was featured with the Habs for 9 games and got an assist and one has to admit that he looks increasingly like a career AHLer. In the off season, he was signed to a one-year contract at the end of which he will be a restricted free agent.
Today, Julien said that he wasn't sure on which line he would slot in but he'd give him power play time. Hard to figure it out since the Habs only had an optional skate this morning but if you're going to bring him up instead of the likes of KK or Poehling, why don't just let him play in the top 6? The Habs have got absolutely nothing to lose and I for one am fine with Kotkaniemi and Poehling trying to qualify for the playoffs in the AHL. Let me make myself clear, I do not think that Charles Hudon has got what it takes to make the NHL (unfortunately) but at this stage? Let him try to prove the naysayers wrong and if he manages to do it well, good for him. Who knows maybe another team will take notice. Best of luck to him because he's not getting any younger and he'll have to make a decision about his career sooner rather than later.
As for Victor Mete, his season is officially over and in 51 games he recorded 4 goals and 7 assists. That's 4 more goals than he had after 2 years in the NHL and it did look early on like he might have more of an offensive impact this season until he was injured in December. Back then, it was an ankle injury and this time, it's a broken foot. The 21 year old will be a restricted free agent this season and it will be interesting to see what kind of contract the Habs GM decides to give him. He was thrown in the deep end as Shea Weber's Partner when he first got into the league but the Habs had to admit that it wasn't a viable option. He looked more comfortable in a lesser role this season and people have already started to wonder if he may be one of the guys who will be left unprotected at the 2021 expansion draft.
Meanwhile, Xavier Ouellet was on the ice today but practiced with no contact. This means that the Folin-Alzner pairing will once again be in the line-up tonight and that's just fine. Much like KK and Poehling, I want Fleury to have a lot of ice-time in Laval.
The Habs will face the Rangers tonight and the puck will drop at 19:00 and the New York outfit is right in the thick of a playoffs race. They're 8 and 2 in their last 10 and have won their last 4, this should make for an interesting challenge.