Habs Ink World Jr Stars Poehling and Primeau to ELC Deals + PLAYOFFS?!?
The Montreal Canadiens have announced that they have signed World Junior Top Foward and MVP Ryan Poehling to a 3 year ELC deal and he will remain with the Canadiens until the end of the season.
Staying with the Habs and being age 20 means that the first year of his ELC is going to be burnt, but he is also expansion draft exempt.
BUT THAT"S NOT ALL!
Bergevin's pen stayed warm as he then signed NCAA star goaltender Cayden Primeau (son of former NHL F Keith Primeau) to a 3 year ELC deal.
19 year old Primeau has been a stud this season in the NCAA posting a record of 25-9-1 in 35 games this season with a 2.00 GAA along with a .936 SP%. He will join the Laval Rocket for the remainder of the season.
PLAYOFFS STILL IN SIGHT, BUT IT'S LOOKING A BIT DISTANT
Your Habs have fought hard to make up for the ground they lost after the All Star break slump but the OT loss to Carolina and regulation loss to Columbus, both Wild Card Rivals, made a lot of hard work moot.
I have said for a while now that the magic point number is 95-96 pts to make the playoffs, but with the East being a beast this year it seems the magic number is likely 98 points.
Can you imagine 5 years ago saying it would take just under 100 points to make the playoffs??? Me thinks the NHL has an issue with the point structure...
The Canadiens have to run the table on Tampa Bay, Washington, and Toronto to close out the season and as someone who likes to look at things logically I just don't think it's possible. Not to be a negative Nancy, but it just doesn't seem to be reasonable. Not to mention, should CBJ's win out their remaining 4 games then the Habs would still be out.
Regardless of playoff berth or 9th place I hope the Canadiens learned a valuable lesson this season. The team rested on their laurels after the All Star break and now if they would have won just 2 more games during their 8-8-2 run then they would be in a much better position today.
The other lesson is when your teams PP is one of the leagues worst but you dominate even strength, then you must make big decisions. There is no doubt in my mind that even an NHL Avg PP would have granted the Habs 3-4 more wins this year. So for all the nonsense flak Bergevin and management get, this is one point you can actually hold him and the coaching staff to account for. Something should have been done, whether it's adding a coach, adding a player, drastic changes to the PP system, almost anything aside from planting your 4th liners on the PP units.
The season was supposed to be a learning one for many of the Canadiens youth on the roster. I think they have had their lesson, now its on the coaches and management to learn theirs as well.
I won't lose faith just yet as playoffs could still technically happen, but I won't be heartbroken now if they don't make it. My hockey heart broke with goal 4 for the Blue Jackets the other night.
Go Habs Go