Montreal Canadiens forward Jonathan Drouin is looking for a fresh start and recently proceeded to a number change, one that would be familiar to Halifax Mooseheads and Tampa Bay Lightning fans.
On Friday, the Montreal Canadiens announced that Jonathan Drouin had decided to change his number from his usual No. 92 to No. 27. Drouin had worn 92 since he started with the Montreal Canadiens in 2017, and, with the recent trade of Alexander Romanov, is seemingly going back to his junior routes this season by choosing No. 27. Not lost on most of the hockey world, Drouin was at his best in his career when wearing No. 27, both with the Halifax Mooseheads and during his short time with the Tampa Bay Lightning, so the choice of number change is not insignificant here.
As he looks to put the past behind him and make the biggest impact in what will be a very important year for him, it’s very interesting that Drouin would proceed to a number change four years into his Canadiens’ tenure with just a dozen days away from training camp.
Alerte : nouveau numéro! ⚠️
— Canadiens Montréal (@CanadiensMTL) September 9, 2022
The 27-year-old Ste-Agathe, Quebec native is entering his contract year and realizes how big this coming season is for him. At his fifth annual golf tournament benefitting the CHUM Foundation, Jonathan Drouin addressed reporters about his future and didn’t duck the tough questions about his status and future with the Montreal Canadiens.
“It’s going to be up to me to prove to management to keep me for more years to come,” Drouin replied when asked about entering the final season of a six-year, $33 million contract that carries a $5.5 million AAV. “It’ll be my play on the ice that will do the talking throughout the year. You just got to play your game and, if they want that on the club moving forward, they’ll make it happen.”
Drouin, who had six goals and 14 assists in 34 games last season, feels like he was playing better last season and likely would’ve improved more if he had gotten surgery for his wrists earlier and now he’s ready for a fresh and final chance to prove he belongs with the Montreal Canadiens.
“I had a good start to the season last year, but then my wrist; I’ve had surgeries on both my wrists so that shouldn’t be a problem this season,” said Drouin on where he’s at with his health. “It was unfortunate last season. If I had had my surgery in January, which I maybe should have, I would have been able to play at least the last month of the season with the new management and new coaching staff.”
With a return to basics, including a number change, Drouin is looking to make the biggest impact possible this season in order to prove he should be part of the plans moving forward.