Frank Gunn The canadian Press
Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs, chasing Shea Weber, Montreal canadiens, during a game in Toronto last Tuesday.
The players of the Montreal canadiens have their first experience behind closed doors Tuesday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs. And they agreed that they still had a lot of work to do in order to find their marks so as to be ready to face Pittsburgh Penguins in series of qualification — particularly in terms of motivation.
“There is no ambiance. There is nothing that is going on. There was more atmosphere in my games atom BB in Mont-Tremblant, said bluntly the attacker Jonathan Drouin in video-conference on Wednesday. It is necessary to try to create energy, because the crowd is not there to help us. So we need to do something else, we need to find a way to have the energy between us.”
“It is hard to get into the game after a break of four months, especially in an arena like that,” added the Quebec. We know that we can be better than yesterday [Tuesday], and there are still things to work on. For us, it really is the consistency ; we don’t have a lot of time to adapt. It is necessary to be ready for Saturday. This will be a good test against the Penguins. “
For his part, the head coach of the Canadian, Claude Julien, has not sought an excuse to justify the game dull offered by his company Tuesday.
“It is the same for all teams. It is sure that it is a challenge, but it will take to create our energy, first said Julien. Four months ago, we saw on vacation during the summer, because the opportunities to participate in the playoffs were very slim. So we are one of the teams fortunate to have the opportunity to participate in the series. And if it excites us not [to participate], so I don’t know what it will take. “
There are therefore still three days to Julien and his men to find the flame in view of the series against the Penguins. And in the meantime, they will have to tweak some of the technical details.
The unit is in advantage formed of Drouin, Nick Suzuki and Joel Armia has appeared rather cleared against the Leafs, and according to the rookie on the Canadian, there are still a lot of bread on the board to threaten the Penguins.
“We rush our games and we have lost many battles in the recovery of the washer, said Suzuki, the player used the most by Julien on Tuesday. It is necessary to have a better cohesion among us, take the time to install ourselves in the enemy territory and create our scoring chances. These are details on which it will work over the next few days. “
Julien was also keen to stress that, if the Canadian wants to win its series against Sidney Crosby and his band, then he should absolutely avoid to concede goals at the beginning and end of the period — as it has too often been the case during the regular season, and also Tuesday against the Leafs.
An error of course
“It is sure that we still had a little bit of rust, and it was not only on the rink. She was also in our decision-making in circumstances of tight, said Julien. We’re going to look at it all, but let’s say that it’s part of the learning of the first game. It will be necessary to avoid this kind of situation happen against the Penguins, but we still have three days to ensure that this is corrected. “
The players of the Habs is retrousseront sleeves and participate in a workout a little later Wednesday, the Center of performance Ford, located in the suburbs of Toronto. Julien said that the attacker Charles Hudon had committed “a small error of course” on Tuesday and missed the morning training of the team. This is one of the reasons why it has not faced the Maple Leafs. The driver of the Blue-white-red has, however, assured that there would be no additional penalty and that Hudon would be to return to her position during the workout.
Earlier this week, Julian had said that it would reduce its workforce from 31 to twenty players on Wednesday, in anticipation of the first match of the series of qualifications of the CH against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.
He also mentioned that it is continuing its assessment in the defensive in order to determine which defenders will make up its third pair, between Cale Fleury, Victor Mete and Xavier Ouellet, in particular.
“We’ll evaluate their play in the defensive, but also their way to give the puck to our forwards, was first said Julien. At this moment, we are conducting our most recent assessments, but, regardless of those that we will choose, it will be necessary that they are excellent in defensive and they facilitate the transition play. We need good quarter-back. “
Weise in Switzerland ?
On the other hand, the attacker of the Canadian Dale Weise will leave the montreal-based organization at the end of the campaign to join the HC Lausanne, reported Wednesday in the swiss daily, in The Morning.
The hockey 31-year-old would be going to Switzerland in the company of the ex-defender of the Canadian Mark Barberio. Another ex-NHL player, Cory Conacher, has recently accepted a contract offer of three years for the club that competes in the national League, the highest level of hockey in switzerland.
Weise, a choice of fourth round, 111th in total, the New York Rangers during the NHL draft in 2008, has scored 55 goals and collected 70 mentions of assistance in 513 career games in the circuit Bettman. It is his second stint with the Habs, after that from 2013 to 2016.
Moreover, we still do not know the state of health of the attacker Alex Belzile, who has been hard hit by the defender of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Jake Muzzin after you have got a good chance of scoring at the mouth of the net of Frederik Andersen in the second period Tuesday night.
Belzile was released sounded on the ice before retreating to the locker room. He did not return to the game thereafter.