Detroit Red Wings: Predicting how the Atlantic Division will Shape Up

DETROIT, MI - APRIL 07: Detroit Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin (71) is congratulated by his teammates on the bench after scoring a goal during the third period of a regular season NHL hockey game between the New York Islanders and the Detroit Red Wings on April 7, 2018, at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan. New York defeated Detroit 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - APRIL 07: Detroit Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin (71) is congratulated by his teammates on the bench after scoring a goal during the third period of a regular season NHL hockey game between the New York Islanders and the Detroit Red Wings on April 7, 2018, at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan. New York defeated Detroit 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
3 of 9
Next
Montreal Canadians
(Photo by Vincent Ethier/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

The Montreal Canadians: 7th

The Canadians have a lot of front office issues, but nothing like the Sens.  Montreal remember traded P.K Subban to the Nashville Predators for Shea Weber.  Weber has been injury plagued since his arrival to the Habs and has had little to no impact on the franchise since his arrival.

The Habs recently traded their captain Max Pacioretty to the Vegas Golden Knights in exchange for a familiar face to the Detroit Red Wings Tomas Tatar.  Tatar is projected to skate on the Habs top line accompanied by Brenden Gallagher and Max Domi.

The Montreal Canadians are projected to start Max Domi as a center.  A position he has yet to play in professional hockey.  Not just a center, their top center.  Let me know how that works out for you Habs nation.

Jonathan Drouin has had some issues throughout his young career getting along with management.  Drouin was traded to the Habs in a deal that landed Mikhail Sergachev to Tampa.  Drouin recorded 46 points including 13 goals last season for the Habs and was a minus 28.

Drouin is a much more capable NHL center than Domi, but Drouin’s inability defensively has led to his return to the wing.  So the Habs have a winger playing center and a center playing wing.  Makes sense right?

General Manager Marc Bergevin has swung and missed often leaving the Habs in limbo.  Many folks have the Detroit Red Wings finishing below the Habs.  I think there are too many question marks with Montreal myself to possess a better ranking.

Key PLayers;

Carey Price is still a top-notch goaltender in the NHL.  Although the injury bug has bitten price in recent years, he is still a solid netminder.  I can certainly see a scenario where the Montreal Canadians offer up Carey Price as trade bait.  Another exciting situation may arise when Seattle is officially granted an expansion team.  Montreal may leave Price unprotected as a way to shed his 10.5 million per season salary.  Price has that expensive cap hit until 2026.  The cap hit makes for a problematic trade piece without eating some of the contract.

Max Domi is a solid player, but I don’t consider him a franchise player.  He is indeed much more gifted offensively on his worst day than his father ever was (that is clearly a joke).  Domi, only 23 years of age, should be coming into his own.  Drouin is 23 as well with a high ceiling if he can find a way to put it all together.

Brenden Gallagher is the most consistent forward of the group.  Known as a pesky pest Gallagher goes into the dirty areas, often lays the body using his small frame in the corner.  Gallagher will drive you crazy to play against but he’s a guy you wish was on your team.

Future Stars;

Maybe the next star, not plural.  Jesperi Kotkaniemi was selected third overall by the Montreal Canadians in the 2018 Entry Level Draft.  This is where Filip Zadina was expected to go.  Montreal is desperate for NHL caliber centers they needed an NHL ready center even if his offensive ceiling isn’t as high as others who are wingers like Zadina or Tkachuk.

The Ugly;

Shea Weber has been nothing but a bust for the Montreal Canadians.  Weber is under contract until 2026 at 7.8 million per season.  Weber has often found himself on the injured reserve list.  Andrew Shaw in his heyday was an effect bottom-six six forward with the always-contending Chicago Blackhawks.  Shaw hasn’t done much for the Habs.  His 3.9 million per season is owed until 2022.

The Montreal Canadians will be a lottery hopeful next summer.