Connect with us

Montreal Canadiens

Montreal Canadiens Goaltending Situation Moving Forward



Habs Canadiens prospect Jakub Dobes

Many talented goaltenders have graced the Montreal Canadiens lineup throughout the decades, to the point that you’d be hard-pressed to reference a successful season that did not involve a top-flight goalie.

Thanks to the play of netminders such as Jacques Plante, Ken Dryden, Patrick Roy, and Carey Price, not to mention George Vézina himself, the Canadiens have rarely had to worry about filling one of the most crucial positions in the entire sports landscape.

Consequently, now that the team no longer has a blue-chip goaltender in the mix, a significant portion of the fanbase sees the lack of depth at the goaltending position as a significant organizational weakness.

Samuel Montembeault’s recent emergence has been encouraging, and Jake Allen’s veteran presence is certainly welcomed in the locker room, but it’s only fair to say that goaltending is no longer the position that defines the Montreal Canadiens. The same can be said about the Laval Rocket. Both Cayden Primeau and Jakub Dobes have potential, the latter more than the former, but few would project them as goaltenders with elite talent.

At least not yet.

And though it may not seem so, in a sense, it’s perfect timing.

Montreal Canadiens Goaltending Situation Moving Forward

The Canadiens shored up their goaltending prospect depth at the 2023 NHL Entry Draft by selecting three netminders: USHL champion Jacob Fowler, QMJHL backup Quentin Miller, and MHL starter Yevgeni Volokhin.

All three possess interesting potential, but as it stands, none of the recently drafted goaltenders are projected as bonafide starters.

At least in the traditional sense.

Fowler has the type of skill set that should one day allow him to become an NHL goaltender, but he’s not the type of goalie that can absorb an unreasonable amount of starts throughout the season. He’ll need to be surrounded by one or two contingency plans, which may seem like a risky approach, but there are several advantages to having a stable of goaltenders rather than one thoroughbred starter.

MUST READ: Montreal Canadiens Prospect Jacob Fowler’s Scouting Report

Not only is it easier on the goaltenders themselves, but sharing the workload should lead to tempered expectations when it comes to contract negotiations. And in a world where the salary cap reigns supreme, saving a few million dollars is certainly a wise approach.

It also gives head coaches more options, as they would no longer be handcuffed by the notion that starting your backup goaltender in crucial games is a sin.

Finally, we have to consider how historically weak the goaltending market has been in the NHL.

Adding a goaltender was once considered the most important building block, but it’s simply no longer the case in the modern era. Goalies can be acquired for pennies on the dollar, owing to the limited spots available in every organization.

Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I’m am intrigue by  Jakub Dobes what he going to do in Laval in this incoming season.

Brian Chandler

That’s all the Habs have been for more than 30 years watching a goaltender doing the butterfly. How about some players that can score on a regular basis or God forbid a Superstar?

Arthur chilli

Vegas leading scorer had 66 points defence wins cups

Alex Barrette

Vegas has a concession center in Jack Eichel and arguably one of the five best defenseman in the league in Pietrangelo. On top of one of the best two-way forwards in Mark Stone.

People need to stop with Vegas doesnt have a superstar. No they dont have one they have 3!


Nope, sorry, agree with Arthur above.

Stone has never exceeded 64 pts in a season…

March has only ONCE hit the 70-pt mark in his career.

Jack is almost a PPG for his career, but nary one season has stood out as OMG. He would be the closest they have to a “superstar”, but I can list more than a dozen centers who are currently better (and yes, I’d rather have Nikki than Jack right now).

Vegas does not have any clear superstars. What they do have is a ton of guys in that 20 to 60 something pts range, veteran leadership, and everyone buying into the system. That is a recipe for winning the cup.

STL did it the same way back in 2019.

I don’t see the Leafs, and EDM, and BOS winning cups lately…with all their “superstars”.

Last edited 4 months ago by morrisk

We’ll end up 3rd worst next year and Montreal better pick up a sniper with that choice.


Habs will be gunning for improvement and will be wanting to go for the wildcard spot. Their whole division could flip this season or next.


This comment has some merit. This could happen within the next couple of seasons. BOS, TOR, and Tampa are getting old…and too many current “superstars” making too much $$$, so cap issues will be forthcoming. Don’t be surprised if at least one of these teams “hiccups” this season. Panthers are mega injured right now and at least a couple of promminant players will start the season on the IR.

As far as the other three budding cup winners (Buff, OTT, DET)…The chances that at least one of these regresses from last season is decent. There is little chance all three improve enough to make the payoffs.

As long as the Habs avoid the significant injuries and have an average or better “injury” season, they WILL be improved and may challenge for a WC spot. That means outside the top 10 in the draft. I figure around pick #13 should be about right.

So no “sniper” likely at that pick to come in ASAP and score immediately. More likely, get one in free agency to join the top line…Habs will have PLENTY of cap space by next summer – and take a look at the UFA list then!

Last edited 4 months ago by morrisk
john harmsworth

Exactly right!


I doubt they will be that bad. They were 5th this year with the most injuries in NHL history and 5 rookie defensemen. They will be an improved team but I’m in no rush to see them becoming a playoff team. A high scoring prospect would be awesome.


Just dump Hoffman and Armia and sign tarasenko. Or let Slafovsky develop.

Alex Barrette

Easier said theb done Dave. Hoffman i think its just a matter of time but Armia will be tough to move … wish for a bounceback season or else we are stuck with him except if we buy out , which is very unlikely

Alex Barrette

They did improve, but we’re still the worst team in our division. We are 100% getting another top 10 pick this year and there wont be any way around it. Players will be traded at the deadline too so …


It’s amazing that we are still saying that after two top 5 draft picks.

Alex Barrette

Im all for another lotery pick. But we are at point in our prospect pool where we should go BPA.

Worst thing worst. We trade one of our best defenseman for a top forward.


Dr Brincat is a sniper…imagine him and Caulfield on the same team!!! Wonder what a Canadiens equivalent offer would have been. The goalie situation could have been solved be getting Carter Hart.


This fuss for a goalie is not necessary. We’ve seen teams win without “elite” goalies.

Let’s work on the rest of the team first, ok? We have Monty and Primeau in the meantime. Give them some time.


you say “moving forward” would be more accurate to say moving backward


Marc??? What are you talking about? Allow me to point it out to you again. This time it will be just Montreal goalies, as that is the subject of this article. In short the Goalies of the future are Monty and Dobes. For now, Monty is our #1 and I have been telling anyone who will listen that he deserves to be our #1 for 2 years now (yes long before all you so called experts realized how good he is). I have even stated that on YOUR own articles. Dobes needs a year or 2 in Laval, but then he will compete for the #1. Not sure who will win the job at that time (it may be a 1A and 1B situation) but regardless our goalie situation will be solid at that time. Fowler is the wildcard in this situation. You say he has NHL potential but not starter potential and I say you are full of it. It is way to early to know where he will end up.He could end up anywhere from the Habs starter of the future to not making the NHL. It will be a few years before we can even start to figure out his ceiling. To write him off so early is not very wise of you, but then again, when have you ever shown to have wisdom?

Robin Belinda

The new goalie prospects are impressive, but I still have a lot of confidence in Primeau and Montembault. I would have Primeau play half the games and Montembault play have the games. This is a good sample size to evaluate both of them.