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Canadiens Camp Notes: Owen Beck Continues To Impress

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Montreal Canadiens prospect Owen Beck

MONTREAL — The annual Red Vs. White scrimmage at the Bell Center was the perfect opportunity for players such as Owen Beck to drive home the point that they deserve to be at the top of the Montreal Canadiens organizational prospect ranking list.

Where It’s At

If you were to remove the names from the jerseys and try to guess which player was drafted first-overall this summer based solely on their performance at training camp, odds are you’d assume it was No.62, Owen Beck.

That’s not to say Juraj Slafkovsky did not merit the first-overall selection, but there’s no doubt Beck has been the Montreal Canadiens’ most impressive forward throughout training camp.

On Sunday Beck was up to his old tricks, making the most of every second he was on the ice. He generated a slew of controlled entries which led to several high-danger scoring chances for his linemates.

Simply put, Beck is a wizard when it comes to anticipating the play, both in the defensive and offensive zone. His cerebral approach has already served him well at training camp, and there’s no doubt it will continue to serve him well as he climbs the organization ranks.

Making Waves

It’s unlikely Anthony Richard starts the season with the Montreal Canadiens, but there’s no doubt he’ll end up playing a crucial role with the Laval Rocket of the AHL. He’s not just a pest, though that’s certainly a big part of his game, he’s a legitimate hockey player that has an impressive skill set, both offensively and defensively. The 25-year-old has great situational awareness in the offensive zone, which led to him scoring two goals for the Red Team.

Xavier Simoneau is also bound for Laval, which means the Canadiens’ AHL affiliate will drive their opponents up the wall with the combination of Simoneau, Richard and Rafael Harvey-Pinard. All three can score, all three can annoy, and most importantly, all three know how to get under the skin of their opponents while avoiding penalties.

X-Man

Arber Xhekaj was one of the most impressive defencemen on the ice, once again putting together an incredibly solid performance in a game which had minimal hits.

When you remove the physical game from the equation, Xhekaj becomes a legitimate NHL prospect. Of course, his aggressive nature is impossible to deny and it would be unfair to expect him to remove all physicality from his game, but he clearly has more focus once he’s not trying to lay out every single opponent that dares enter the defensive zone with the puck.

Few players have impressed more than Xhekaj throughout training camp.

Ready To Go

Brendan Gallagher didn’t just show up to training camp in perfect health, an incredibly rare situation for the feisty forward, he also showed up with a renewed sense of urgency. He’s eager to get the season going and erase all memories from his difficult 2021-22 campaign with the Montreal Canadiens.

Gallagher, alongside Corey Schueneman, has stood out as the most impressive veterans at training camp.

Prime Minister of Defence

Jordan Harris, Kaiden Guhle, Justin Barron and Xhekaj are all ahead of William Trudeau on the depth chart, but it’s clear Trudeau has the exact type of skill set that easily translates to the NHL.

Trudeau has made few if any mistakes in the several scrimmages and drills since the opening of development camp.

He may not be the flamboyant prospect in the system, but he very well may be the most consistent.

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habbernack

Trudeau is one of the guys I noticed and Watching Harris and Xhekaj as a pairing is a very good pairing. I could see the difference when Mr Big was with Dello. Parker Jones intrigues me.

habbernack

Quite a few games go into OT so I think 3×3 needs to be practiced as much as the PK and PP. This will never happen but it wouldn’t bother me if there was a 72 game schedule. The players would still be making the same per game wages but with 10 less games. More practice better hockey, Maybe less time lost to injuries. Also if teams with a division played 2 games in 3 days once a year in the sched. Save on CO2 etc. Good for the players etc. Great for the fans. #GHG. Hatched a Habs fan 75 years ago.

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