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Season Intro - GM Arsenault Addresses the media

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Season Intro - GM Arsenault Addresses the media

Messagepar Montreal GM » 04 Déc 2015, 11:00

It feels like its been a long off season since the Canadiens were eliminated from the playoffs last year. A few faces gone and a few new in the locker room, and the Canadiens are expecting a better result than last year.

5 or 4
With the new season upon us. GM Arsenault made his selections or divisional teams and is quite happy with the result:

GM Arsenault:
We are very fortunate to retain 2 teams from our division last year in Quebec and Nashville to keep our rivalries going. Along with us and Edmonton gives us 3 Canadian based teams in our division which always makes for great hockey. We are comfortable with 4 teams in our division as opposed to 2 other divisions with 5, we feel more games against our own division will promote the rivalries for many years to come.

Leaders Leaving for anew
Due to expansion teams, it was a possibility, but noone expected to see captain Ben Guite move to Baltimore, with only a handful of players that the team could protect, Guite was left open and the Thunder took the opportunity to take away the team's captain for the past 2 seasons. And after seeing Guite leave to the new team from Baltimore, a week later, GM Arsenault moved defenseman and alternate captain Eric Tremblay to the Thunder as well. Mark Huglen who the Canadiens picked up on Waivers last season was snagged by the Vermont Wild Wings.

GM Arsenault:
We were happy with how Tremblay played the game. But still took too many penalties for what this teams philosophy is. We know Eric will be a key to the Thunders success over the rest of his career. Mark was a great puck moving Defenseman on the power play and it will be a hard role to fill. But we have to move ahead with what we have and I am confident that what we have now can and will be successful this season. Ben was a leader on and off the ice and it's hard to replace that. Everyone will have to step up into a leadership role until we decide on new captains.

New Face in the Locker Room
The biggest news out of Montreal this off season was during the second round of the Entry Draft when it was announced that they moved their waiting edmonton pick to Quebec, along with 2 other first rounders for superstar Jonathan Falloon. With such a high price tag on Falloon, it was hard to believe the Canadiens would move what they did, but Falloon is now a Canadien and alot is expected from him this season.

GM Arsenault:
We realize that we have given up alot for this player, but we felt that we needed a goal scoring Left Winger that can spark some of our linemates. Last season for Left wingers, Bill Gall had 16 goals and Ulf Sandstron had 11, if Jonathan can get half as many goals as he had last season (38) its more than what these guys tallied individually. So we feel this is something that will help us through the rough times and give us more scoring punch, and take the pressure off the other young players who are still valuable to us.

Same Defense, Cheaper rate
It was no surprise that Montreal could have lost their leading defensemen last season throughout free agency. Hugo Marchand, Timo Peltomaa, and Xavier Majic all could have signed contracts away from the Canadiens, but all have decided to come back, and mostly at smaller contracts.

Hugo Marchand who was given a whopping 11 million dollar contract last season decided to come back for 7,501,000, and Timo Peltomaa who had a 5,001,000 came back for $500,000 less, which made it easier for GM Arsenault to sign Power play specialist Xavier Majic to a contract 1.5 million more than last season, but felt his skills were well worth it.

GM Arsenault:
Timo and Hugo were huge parts of our team last year and we bealieve they can continue their play this year and at cheaper contracts, it was a no brainer to resign them. Majic was offered other contracts and when we saw that we could have him for only a million or so more than last year we opened our pockets for him. he had 6 goals last year and 5 of them were on the power play. You can't ask much more than that.

So how will all this pan out? Who will be the next team captain. Who will be paired with Falloon and on what line? What will happen with the remainder of the Canadiens from last year who didn't sign yet. Stay Tuned
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