Where Canadiens Prospects Roy & Kidney Will Play Next Season
Two Montreal Canadiens prospects will be making the jump to professional hockey in the near future.
Both Joshua Roy’s and Riley Kindey’s QMJHL careers have come to an end.
Technically, the pair could return to the league for an additional season, seeing as both will be under 21 before the start of the 2023-24 campaign, however, it’s safe to say they’re ready to make the next step in their hockey careers.
What’s Next For Kidney
Kidney finished his QMJHL career by scoring 76 goals and 205 assists, good for 281 points in 218 games. It’s worth noting the majority of his production came during his tenure with the Acadie-Bathurst Titan, where he served as an alternate captain.
Once Kidney was traded to a team where he didn’t have to single-headedly lead the offensive charge, his numbers dramatically improved. He scored 65 points in just 29 games with the Gatineau Olympiques, not to mention 22 points in 13 playoff games.
With that in mind, it’s important to remember the next step in Kidney’s career will take place in professional hockey, where players must make a positive impact at both ends of the rink.
Offensively, Kidney is likely ready for AHL hockey.
He has a penchant for creating time and space for his opponents, and despite sometimes avoiding high-traffic areas, he may very well be one of the most talented playmakers in the Canadiens’ prospect pool.
But he will need to work on his speed and strength if he hopes to maintain his strong offensive presence once he’s playing professional hockey.
As for his defensive prowess, there’s a lot of work left to be done.
Not the best look for Kidney (No.19). Stands around as the Sea Dogs score a shorthanded goal. pic.twitter.com/r6vW8QIHd3
— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) April 1, 2023
He struggles to maintain defensive positioning and needs to do a better job shutting down passing lanes in his own zone.
Which is why I wouldn’t be surprised if the 2021 second-round pick ends up playing with the Trois-Rivieres Lions in the ECHL at some point next season. There’s an influx of talented headed for the Laval Rocket, and players that can’t help at both ends of the rink are at risk of dropping down in the depth charts.
What’s Next For Roy
Roy earned 297 points in 216 QMJHL games, but his growth trajectory has differed from what we saw from Kidney.
While Kidney improved upon his strengths throughout his Junior career, Roy improved upon his weaknesses as well, which means he has a leg up on his competition.
Offensively-talented players fail to meet expectations ad nauseam in the AHL.
It’s simply not sufficient to be talented at one end of the ice.
Defensive prowess must be an asset if mid-tier prospects are expected to eventually make the jump to the NHL.
As Sebastian High, one of my favourite prospect experts, described in an earlier piece, Roy’s penchant for playing a smart game in his own zone should lead to good things in the AHL, and perhaps the NHL.
“Roy is ready for a step up in competition, and he has been for the past year,” said High. “Laval is the best place for him to start, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he won a spot with the Canadiens in training camp. He plays a calculated game and can hold his own in a role as a two-way checking forward, which makes him an easier player to put on a fourth line than most of the other prospects in the Habs’ system.”
Seeing as he does possess a well-rounded game, a roster spot with the Canadiens is not out of the question for Roy.
It is, however, quite unlikely.
His goal was fine, but check out Roy's assists at 0:30, 0:42, and 0:55.
Ridiculous stuff from the #Habs prospect. pic.twitter.com/32vlejPczl
— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) April 27, 2023
Simply put, I expect both Roy and Kidney to start the season with the Laval Rocket in the AHL.
Though given their growth since their Draft seasons, only one of the two has legitimate NHL aspirations coming into the 2023-24 training camp.
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In Laval . It’s about development.
No contest in my opinion. Roy is NHL ready. Kidney is not. Laval is probably better for his development though, if he is only going to get 4th line minutes. Then again, he started on the 4th line of Team Canada at the World jrs and he ended up on the top line, so…
Ok, wishful thinking but I think Roy is a keeper and will be in Montreal sooner rather than later.
Whether they are nhl ready or not. I wanna see them dominate in Laval before making the jump. They have been drafted for their offensive potential and should be developped accordingly by playing 18-20 minutes a game in Laval. Not 10 or 12 minutes in montreal.
ummm why put an offensive goal scoring weapon as a checking forward? Maybe were to uer to the old system that we forgotten we wont be doing that with forwards of his caliber and scoring touch. Strenght and conditioning can come from the gym.. he doesnt need to be put into a situation as a checking forward.. thats not who he is.
Disagree on Roy
He turns 20 a month before training camp in the Q.
If im MSL and Hughes i keep him in Junior for a Memorial Cup Run
Same reason we did Suzuki who was also close to a Starting spot on MTL’s roster when we sent him down. Good thing we did too as even with a Phenomenal Extra year in Junior as a 20 year old , He struggled those first 30 games and it was Nate Thompson who helped him find consistency .
NHL is a lot tougher league to play in then many give credit for.
Its even harder when you’re a guy like Roy or Suzuki who arent quite Superstars but deffinately All Star Material as they Mature .
Kidney im all for in Laval
He needs time to work on his Center game at a Pro Level.
But Roy has to come up as an Overachiever.
I also know he wants another run at a 2nd Jean Beliveau Scoring Title.
Why? Him , Garland and Crosby, they’re the only ones since 2000 that would do it.
He came close but he missed games and in the end it made him a finalist not a winner.
Suzuki finished his junior career at age 19 , he played 2 junior seasons after his 2017 draft. He joined the Habs 2 months after turning 20 in august 2019.
Roy , turning 20 in august, will go to camp in Sept. at the same age that Suzuki was when he first made the Canadiens lineup .
Yea like you write way to many words for someone who is way under informed. If you don’t know the subject at hand maybe stay quiet 🤐