Arber Xhekaj's Mother Sends a Clear Message to Canadiens Fans After Her Son's Demotion

Published December 7, 2023 at 3:09 PM

Arber Xhekaj's debut in the American Hockey League has generated significant discussion, particularly regarding the noticeable change in his style of play.

Arpon Basu of The Athletic, who attended Xhekaj's first AHL game, expressed concerns about the young defenseman's performance.

"I went to see Arber Xhekaj's very first AHL game last night. I didn't recognize him." - Arpon Basu

"Arpon's assessment is accurate. What does the Canadiens want to teach him? To become a defenseman who doesn't hit, doesn't fight, and doesn't defend his teammates? Playing well defensively is NOT incompatible with being imposing on the ice. Let him play his game!" - HFTV

Analysts like Georges Laraque and Norman Flynn have criticized the Canadiens' decision to send Xhekaj to the AHL, fearing it might negatively impact his natural playing style.

Although Xhekaj's first performance in the AHL, where he finished with a -3 differential, was disappointing, it's important to remember that adapting to a new level of play can take time. We've seen similar situations with players like Cole Caufield and Justin Barron, who eventually adapted and thrived.

Laval Rocket head coach Jean-François Houle understands this and is giving Xhekaj time to adjust before helping him rebound and return stronger from this experience.

Arber's mother, Simona Xhekaj, has also voiced her appreciation for the fans' support for her son during this challenging time.

December 7   |   177 answers
Arber Xhekaj's Mother Sends a Clear Message to Canadiens Fans After Her Son's Demotion

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