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Canadiens Prospect Report: Prospects Face-Off In CHL Playoffs



Canadiens prospects

The Canadian Hockey League playoffs are in full swing, which means several Montreal Canadiens players are working their way toward a Memorial Cup run.

As is often the case in the first round of the CHL playoffs, most Canadiens prospects that advanced had a rather easy time.

With the exception of Riley Kidney’s Gatineau Olympiques, who took five games to dispatch the Saint-John Seadogs, as well as Vinzenz Rohrer’s 67’s, who took five games to beat the Oshawa Generals, every other Canadiens prospect that advanced did so in a series sweep, setting up a rather interesting second-round in all three CHL leagues.

Mesar and Mailloux

Both the London Knights and the Kitchener Rangers advanced by beating their respective opponents in four straight games. It was expected in London’s case, but it was certainly not easy to project when it comes to Kitchener.

Truth be told, Kitchener has a rather strong lineup and should have performed better throughout the regular season, however, they struggled to find chemistry this season, which even led to their head coach being replaced in the middle of the year.

Fortunately for Kitchener, they found their rhythm in the playoffs, beating Daniil Sobolev and the first-place Windsor Spitfires by a combined score of 20-7. In otherwords, it wasn’t just a surprising result, it was a dominant effort by a team that was seeded eighth in their conference.

Filip Mesar did not flourish from an offensive standpoint, with just one goal in four games, but it’s also fair to point out he was rather unlucky not to hit the scoresheet with a little more regularity. Mesar was engaged in the play on a nightly basis and generated a healthy number of scoring chances for the Rangers.

Mesar will face the London Knights in the second round, which sets up a battle of Canadiens prospects seeing as Logan Mailloux is a mainstay on the Knights’ blueline.

MUST READ: Canadiens Prospect Power Rankings: Season Finale Edition

Mailloux and the Knights quickly eliminated Cedrick Guindon and the Owen Sound attack in the first round, with Mailloux earning scoring two goals and three assists in the process.

The Knights should be considered the favourites in this series, which gets underway on Thursday night, however, given the momentum Kitchener built in the first round, we could be in for a very entertaining series.

It’s also worth noting the Rangers beat the Knights in the first round of the 2022 playoffs.

Special teams, in particular, will play a big role. Both teams are hovering around 30 percent efficiency with the man advantage, though it should be noted the Knights received 24 powerplay opportunities in the first round, compared to just 10 for the Rangers.

Beck and Rohrer

Much like the Rangers, the Peterborough Petes added several talented players at the trade deadline, but they also had a hard time gelling with the influx of new players.

Things changed in the playoffs, as the Petes would go on to sweep the Sudbury Wolves.

Beck, who registered points in 10 of the 11 games of the season, maintained his offensive momentum, finishing the series with two goals and an assist.

As for Rohrer, who plays on one of the best teams in the entire CHL, he produced six points in five games, helping the 67’s cruise to an easy first-round victory over the Generals. Oshawa’s lone win came in game three and required overtime, but their hopes were quickly dashed when Ottawa responded with a 9-0 win the following game.

Peterborough will have a difficult time with the 67’s, however, it is yet another opportunity to watch two top-notch Canadiens prospects faceoff in the OHL playoffs.

Game One of the series is scheduled for Friday.

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Both Kidney and Joshua Roy had excellent first rounds, earning 11 and 10 points, respectively.

It took five games for the Olympiques to beat the SeaDogs, whereas the Sherbrooke Phoenix needed just four games to beat the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada.

With the first round in the books, the second round is set up to be favourable for both prospects.

Roy will face the Drummondville Voltigeurs, a team that won just 29 of their 68 regular-season games in regulation.

As for Kidney, he will play against the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies, which should be a relatively difficult series for the Olympiques, at least relative to their previous matchup.

Both series get underway on Friday, and the smart money is on both Canadiens prospects advancing to the third round with very little difficulty.

Western Hockey League

The Canadiens only own the rights to one prospect currently playing in the WHL, however, it’s a prospect playing on one of the strongest teams in the country.

Jared Davidson and the Seattle Thunderbirds handled the Kelowna Rockets with ease, cruising to a 4-0 series win. Davidson scored one goal and four assists in the process.

Seattle will now face the Prince George Cougars in the second round, which gets underway on Friday.

The two teams met on four occasions this year with Seattle winning three of the four games, including an 8-1 drubbing in their last meeting of the season.

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