Canadiens Prospects Set To Take Over Laval Rocket Next Season
The Laval Rocket are set to have a significant wave of Montreal Canadiens prospects joining their ranks next season.
Over the last few seasons, few legitimate Canadiens prospects have come up from the team’s AHL affiliate and carved out a long career in Montreal.
Outside of Jake Evans, there hasn’t been one full-time graduate from the Habs’ minor-league team in a very long time.
Yes, Cole Caufield may have played a few games in the AHL last year, but he wasn’t a player that simmered in the minors for a season or two before making the jump; he was already NHL-ready.
This season, the Montreal Canadiens got their first taste of minor-league prospects cementing their status in the NHL thanks to Rafaël Harvey-Pinard and Jesse Ylönen.
The two best youngsters to play for the Rocket over the last few seasons, the young forwards were able to seize their opportunity to show they can be everyday NHLers.
But, for the Canadiens to become a powerhouse organization, this needs to become a yearly occurrence, not a blip in time.
Thankfully, general manager Kent Hughes is very invested in the success of the Laval Rocket and has actively encouraged his prospects to head there before making the jump.
Change Is In The Air
Going into this season, the Canadiens had Harvey-Pinard, Jesse Ylönen, Joël Teasdale and Jan Mysak as legitimate forward prospects on the Laval Rocket.
That number may almost double for next season, as Emil Heineman, Joshua Roy, Sean Farrell, Riley Kidney and Jared Davidson could all be making the jump to AHL hockey full-time.
There’s also the possibility of adding Filip Mesar to the fold next season, as he is eligible to play in the AHL at 19 due to being drafted out of Europe.
Meanwhile, the Canadiens will continue to funnel their defence prospects to the AHL next season, as William Trudeau and Mattias Norlinder will be joined by Jayden Struble and Miguel Tourigny as regulars next year.
With Cayden Primeau looking like Laval’s starter yet again next year, he’ll have some company with newly signed Jakub Dobes likely to back him up.
It would be a significant increase in prospect flow from past years, where Laval could become both a top AHL hockey destination and a true developmental feeder for the Canadiens.
A True Pipeline
The Montreal Canadiens will likely have successive waves of prospects coming in over the next two seasons, as their many draft picks hit maturity and enter pro hockey.
Having a three-level developmental structure with the Laval Rocket and Trois-Rivières Lions gives the organization a ripe opportunity to optimize the growth of its top young assets at all levels.
Given the addition of Adam Nicholas as Director of Hockey Development, the club is now in a stronger position to not only bring in more prospects at a time, but churn out legitimate NHL players with improved developmental strategies and facilities.
Youngsters like Harvey-Pinard and William Trudeau have applauded the improved resources they have at their disposal and have credited the new-look developmental team with their rise to prominence in the NHL and AHL respectively.
With Nicholas and co. about to receive the organization’s most important wave of prospects yet, next year’s Laval Rocket could very well give Montreal Canadiens fans a glimpse of what’s to come.
MHN 2023 NHL Draft
MHN Post-Lottery 1st-Round Mock Draft
4shares Share Tweet Comment! Reddit FlipAll but four picks have yet to be determined in the first round of the...
MHN 2023 NHL Mock Draft: Pre-Lottery Edition
13shares Share Tweet Comment! Reddit FlipThe 2023 NHL Draft Lottery is just a few days away, and we did a...
Do you think that no one will claim Primeau when we try to send him to Laval after training camp? I believe he’s no longer waiver exempt next season. If we don’t plan on trading him this summer, or keeping him in Montreal over Allen (unlikely), I think someone will claim him off waivers if we try to send him to the AHL.
Primeau is not the guy, we would have seen it by now. Most goalies who become true #1s seem to do so within about 3-5 years of being drafted. Primeau was drafted 6 years ago, and has bounced back n forth between the Habs and Laval for the past 4. His Laval stats seems to be getting worse over time. IDK…but its not passing the “eyeball test”, so to speak.
I think the goalie thing will need to be sorted out by the 2024-25 season…give it one more season to shake out. By then, I don’t see either of the 3 current goalies du jour being the #1, so that will become a priority for Hughes by then.
I just wrote a detailed response to your comment only to have it all get erased when this site’s pop-up ads wiped it away.
The short answer is, I’m not a fan of Primeau. I just think we’ll lose him for nothing if we try to send him down after training camp. It’s unlikely we trade Allen, so I think Primeau gets traded this summer, probably in a package deal with a guy like Edmundson.