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HOCKEYPATROL  /  NHL  /  NEWS

Habs Insider Reports Huge Changes Coming Soon!

Published February 8, 2022 at 10:24
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The Canadiens are having their worst season in franchise history so it's obvious that changes need to be made. But those changes can be coming sooner than later, according to what Habs reporter Stu Cowan shared.

The Canadiens had their bye week and Cowan believes it's a good thing for them who are on a 6 game losing streak including 2 embarrassing losses to the Edmonton Oilers and then the Columbus Blue Jackets. Cowan said, «the Canadiens looked good at practice they looked rejuvenated and we're battling hard.»

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Canadiens Paul Byron said, «To be able to kind of park hockey for a week and get out of Montreal and just kind of focus on your life, your family is actually pretty good mentally.»



Habs head coach Dominique Ducharme will likely be replaced at the end of the season with the Montreal Canadiens being 8-29-7 so far this season. To be fair Ducharme has had his luck cut out for him all season, losing a lot of key players to free agency or trades and losing their two most important players in captain Shea Weber and goaltender Carey Price. You got to give Ducharme credit, he could have said «screw this» and left but no the Canadiens head coach is going down with his ship.

The Habs bench boss was happy with the Canadiens practice today saying, «We like that competition up front but, obviously, we know we cannot be keeping 16 forwards changes are coming.»

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Ducharme said he spoke with Kent Hughes Monday morning and that the team's new general manager was well aware of what he had planned for practice. Player development at this point is more important than winning games for the Canadiens, so it would make sense to send Cole Caufield who was on the fourth line with Laurent Dauphin and Joel Armia and Poehling down to the AHL's Laval Rocket. They would get more ice time as well as play for a team that's competitive and competing for a playoff spot.

Ducharme said he speaks daily with Hughes and Jeff Gorton, the executive vice-president of hockey operations, but that it's still too early to make a plan for how they want him to coach the rest of this season, balancing player development with trying to win games.

«There might be many things happening before or at the trade deadline, so we'll see,» Ducharme said. «We'll have more discussions about that I would say in the next few days and looking at options and also talking about the situation right now.»

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Byron believes that finally having enough healthy bodies to create some internal competition is a good thing as he went on to say,

«I thought the energy was really good today,» he said after the 4 p.m. practice. «I thought everyone was excited to come back to the rink and practice. Guys were going on the ice 20 minutes early, so you could see everyone was just excited to get back. As we get healthy, as we get more guys back in the lineup, it's going to keep pushing everybody to be at their best because if not there's someone ready to take your place. That's what makes hockey exciting. I think everyone's looking forward to that challenge. It's time for guys to push hard and try and be the solution to make this team take some steps forward. You just got to find a way to create a fire in you an internal fuel and find a way to make every game kind of important and make every game matter.»

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Last season's Stanley Cup Final, when the Canadiens lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning, must seem like an eternity ago to Byron after everything he has gone through in the seven months since. When asked what's the biggest lesson he has learned during that time,

Byron said, «Just how fast things can change. You're the highest of highs in July everyone loves you and then you're the lowest of lows four or five months later. That's the world of sports, that's the world we live in.»

Credit: Montreal Gazette
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Habs Insider Reports Huge Changes Coming Soon!

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