Romanov discusses one of the most difficult tasks he had during his first season

Published August 29, 2021 at 10:13

Coming from a league like the KHL, where time and space are considerably more abundant than in North America on the smaller ice surface, can be difficult. Alexander Romanov, of the Montreal Canadiens, learned that the hard way last season.

In a recent interview in his native Russia, Romanov discussed what it takes to be a successful NHL defenseman. The young blueliner stressed the importance of focus and reading the play.

"You can't blink in the NHL," Romanov added. "You can defeat McDavid, but it's hard to beat strong workers who simply throw the ball forward and hit it. It was tough against Calgary and Vancouver."

The NHL has many layers that other leagues lack, especially on a larger ice surface. Adaptation is difficult for a rookie defensemen.

Because Romanov's first taste of NHL action was in 2020-21 and the playoffs are a different beast, it becomes clearer why the coaching staff didn't trust him yet... but they will.

The 21-year-old will inevitably gain responsibilities and become a cornerstone on Montreal's blueline.

Romanov's ability to recognise and comprehend the key distinctions between playing in Europe and North America will be a huge asset as he continues to grow at the NHL level.

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