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NHL Draft

Canadiens Continue Poker Game, Meeting With Slafkovsky



NHL Draft

Montreal Canadiens general manager Kent Hughes confirmed that the Canadiens will meet one final time Thursday with top NHL Draft prospect Juraj Slafkovsky.

“Just dotting our i’s and crossing our t’s,” Hughes said.

This will be the third time that the Montreal Canadiens meet with the 6-foot-4, 218-pound winger who has skyrocketed up various NHL Draft rankings, including the annual Bob McKenzie TSN final NHL Draft rankings last week. However, McKenzie did stress that he was still unsure that the Montreal Canadiens would jump on the Slafkovsky bandwagon, if they can find a seat. So far leading into the NHL Draft, the Canadiens have met with Slafkovsky at the NHL Combine and the World Championships.

Hughes, executive vice president Jeff Gorton, head coach Martin St. Louis, special advisor to the general manager Vinny Lecavalier and more Canadiens staff have met at least five times with fellow top prospect Shane Wright. The next potential meeting will come if Hughes calls his name out when if and when the Canadiens draft first overall as expected.

“They’ve been great. Really positive conversations with them at the combine as well with my meeting with them and then diner with them,” said Wright recently on his relationship and talks with the members of the Montreal Canadiens. “I’ve also had phone calls with Marty St. Louis and Vinny Lecavalier as well. Just kind of talking over their organization, what they’re looking for in a player and what they expect out of their players. It’s been great so far.”

In the latest and last Montreal Hockey Now NHL Mock Draft, Marco D’Amico had Wright going first overall, followed by Juraj Slafkovsky to the New Jersey Devils and then Logan Cooley at third overall to the Arizona Coyotes. However, Hughes meeting with Slafkovsky still leaves that door open that the Canadiens will make him the top pick overall at the NHL Draft Thursday at the Bell Centre. Is that the case or is he still playing poker with Devils GM Tom Fitzgerald in hopes of potentially sparking a last-minute trade?

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IMO , Hughes will try to get both.

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