MAJOR: Two Key Pieces of the Canadiens Roster to Come Imminently

Aaron Itovitch
March 13, 2024  (7:58)

Montreal Canadiens jersey
Photo credit: Yardbarker

On BPM Sports recently, Mathias Brunet made a statement that sparked a lot of discussion on social media.

He posed the following question: are you optimistic or pessimistic about the Canadiens' rebuild?
According to him, to be fully optimistic about Kent Hughes' work, the Montreal Canadiens still lack two defensemen.
The key, really the key, is defense. The Canadiens are missing a major right-handed defenseman and a top offensive defenseman. And the foundation will be whether Reinbacher and Hutson develop to their full potential. Then, we can talk." – Mathias Brunet

So, despite the depth of promising talents on the blue line, including Logan Mailloux, Kaiden Guhle, Justin Barron, Arber Xhekaj, Jordan Harris, Jayden Struble, and Adam Engstrom, everything hinges on what Hutson and Reinbacher will become in the NHL.

The real problem isn't defense, but offense

Honestly, I seriously don't believe that the success of the rebuild will be defined by the development of the defense. The Canadiens have one of the most promising defensive brigades in the league, that's certainly not where the Tricolore's Achilles' heel lies.
It's more the glaring lack of talent in offense that's lacking. Yes, the Canadiens have a solid first line in the making with Nick Suzuki, Cole Caufield, and Juraj Slafkovsky.
But beyond this trio, the rest of the lineup is filled with question marks.
For now, it's even uncertain if Kirby Dach can truly become a top-6 center, due to his history of major injuries and fragility. Is Alex Newhook a scorer of more than 50 points per season? Can Joshua Roy play in a top-6 role long term?
Among the prospects, like Owen Beck, Filip Mesar, Sean Farrell, or others, none seem to have the potential to become a top-line forward. This means if the development of Roy, Dach, or Newhook falls short, there's no internal backup to be used as a true second-line player.
That's the real cloud hanging over Kent Hughes right now. The GM will need to manage to add at least two offensive talents soon to hope that the rebuild will become a real success.
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MAJOR: Two Key Pieces of the Canadiens Roster to Come Imminently

Are you optimistic about this rebuild?

Yes16582.9 %
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