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Canadiens Prospect David Reinbacher Scores First Goal First Shot



David Reinbacher Montreal Canadiens

It didn’t take long for Montreal Canadiens prospect David Reinbacher to make his mark in the AHL.

The 2023 fifth-overall pick scored his first goal on the lone shot he took in his North American professional hockey debut with the Canadiens’ AHL affiliate, the Laval Rocket.

To make matters even more interesting, the goal tied the game midway through the period, which gave the Rocket an opportunity to win a crucial game versus their rivals, the Belleville Senators. Fellow defenceman Logan Mailloux obliged, securing a win that will go a long way in keeping the Rocket’s playoff hopes alive.

The play was rather surprising, in that Reinbacher rarely ventured into open ice when he played for EHC Kloten. In addition, he dangled the Senators’ defenceman before landing his well-placed wrist shot, another type of play he never unveiled in Switzerland.

What’s Next For David Reinbacher

Of course, we can’t put too much stock into one game. If Reinbacher had an awful debut, we’d also preach for a little patience.

But it will surely provide a much-needed confidence boost for the 19-year-old defenceman.

Things have not exactly gone smoothly since Reinbacher was picked in the first round by the Montreal Canadiens. His season in the National League was a disaster from a developmental standpoint. That’s not to say he took a step back, but there was very little in terms of tangible improvements. An early-season injury complicated things, only to have that issue compounded by a carousel of coaching changes, three to be exact.

Reinbacher improved his play down the stretch, but you’d be hard-pressed to argue it was an ideal situation for a top NHL prospect.

Now that he’s arrived in Canada he will have an opportunity to familiarize himself with the team system and the cultural changes, but more importantly, he’ll have access to important mentors such as development coach Adam Nicholas.

Some have already labelled the 19-year-old as a bust, which is the hockey equivalent of suggesting a bird won’t be able to fly while it’s still in its shell.

At the very least, those who have shown a lack of patience (and sense) can finally take a step back and allow the defender an opportunity to truly shine.

The fact of the matter is that David Reinbacher’s career is just getting started in earnest.

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Reinbacher will be fine. Mtl wouldn’t have drafted him 5th overall if they didn’t think there was something there. Let’s all give both him and the team the time and space for his game to develop. It’s a good story line he scored in his 1st game with Laval, but as pointed out in the write-up, doesn’t really matter.

This is now the 3rd straight season Canadiens will miss the playoffs. Chances are they are 2 years away from being competitive, rebuilds take time. And even if they do everything right, no guarantees things go as hoped.

Been discussed all over the place how they can’t score, that seems to be the most pressing issue now. Hope that they can pick-up some snipers over the off-season either through trades, free agency or guys coming up from the minors to address that.

Definite excess of young d-men and there’s not room enough for all of them. Not splitting the atom to see how packaging some of their prospects in return for NHL-calibre shooters makes a lot of sense.


What is your definition of compete? They should compete for a wildcard next year… Maybe more depending on what hughes does. But they wont compete for a cup anytime soon… This of course requires a normal amount of injuries


A bit condescending Marc. Lots of knowledgeable people were upset that he was taken at 5 when it did not meet best player available or biggest organizational need criteria. Then he has a regressive year, he wasn’t as good as last year period. If he were draft eligible this year, based on his play, I doubt he would not be a first round pick. So you say it is impatient and poor sense to raise concern? The bird is out of the shell and not developing toward flight as well as expected/hoped/ others are would apply your metaphor more appropriately.

I’m not saying he’s a bust, but I’m less optimistic about him a year in than on draft day. Time will tell but there are red flags at this stage.

Billy P

Clearly you didn’t watch the game last night.It’s a small sample size for sure but he looked as good out there as any player and his goal was a beaut ! He does fit the organizational need as a Right D and he was the highest rated Dman in the draft. Let’s see how he progresses under the guidance of a polished professional support team as compared to the chaotic mess he played for last season. Some top 10 picks never develop so there are no guarantees he’ll live up to sky high expectations but he looks pretty solid at this point.


So why would they ever send him back over to that chaos? If you were making the decision, would you have kept him here with the polished professional support team or sent him back? He had one lousy goal all year over there and he was playing with Nathan Bealieu for a while so a high first rounder with another first with lots of nhl experience and they are the worst team and he gets less than half the points he did the previous year.

I watched only the highlights of his goal. It was nice but let’s not make it a candidate for goal of the year although it would be one of his two best for sure. Most comments seem to agree a tepid first period , made obvious mistakes but looked better a the game progressed.


For accurate information purposes, the scouting community was divided on who was the top defenseman available last year as I checked a bunch and Sandin-Pellikka was higher on at least as many final draft lists than David, and both are right shots. Interesting also is the lowest I could find either was 6 but mostly they started around 8-10 range and none as low as 5th.

It was known as a forwards draft so the best defenseman available may not be all that great of a prospect. So it was risky taking him when you had Savard Kovacevic, mailloux and Barron as right shot D and lots of guys are as good on their off side. Not the same organizational need as offense.

He was -1 with no points and no shots last night, did you watch the game and how did he look?


On a bottom feeding team with zero offense and multiple coaching changes he still put up one of the better seasons to ever come out of the NL by a developing player over multiple analytics, and still looked good by the eye test. But u wouldn’t draft him in the first round? Thanks for telling the class u look at hockeyDB to see if someone’s good.

As the article said, he’s already in one game showed he can do things he didn’t show in Kloten. Now we can’t take that as a sign he’ll b a star, but considering how bad Kloten was, we CAN take it as a sign of what he was being asked to do as the best defender on a team destined for relegation that bleeds goals constantly. Perhaps he was asked to defend more than anything to stop goals against? But even if that’s not the case, he still had the most pts of any Dman on the team despite only playing 35 games.

We have no idea what the situation with Michkov was. We know there were teams he didn’t want to play for, that there’s something weird with his dad, that he had a 3yr contract, that he’s in Russia and there’s a war… there’s a lot of weird things at play there. Plus he’s small and we already have caufield. Then u look at how he isn’t even playing with his actual team. He can’t make it in a higher slot on that roster so they loan him. Do I think he’ll be a star in the nhl? Yes. But u can’t ignore all these things. And if ur drafting at 5, u have to get something. Leonard and benson look good too, but Leonard plays on a stacked team and isn’t exactly dominating the league and wasn’t a hobey baker finalist, and benson is small, also not dominant. They’re young, lots of runway, both will b good nhlers and could’ve helped us, but there’s nothing that says “clearly better than reinbacher”. By some analytics reinbacher had the best season of any draft eligible player in the NL not named Matthews. Better than Josi…. Again, maybe reinbacher is a but and all the others r stars, but right now, evidence shows there’s questions with Michkov, and the others are NOT clearly better than DR.

All we can do now is wait and see. But having set views one way or another given the circumstances just doesn’t make sense.


He was a major part – perhaps the marquis player- of a team that greatly regressed and disappointed, an indisputable fact. And you call that one of the best seasons ever by a “ developing” player.

His stat line this year in Kloten was 35 games played 1 goal 10 assists for 11 points. So wow, the most points of any defenseman on the team. is there an award for that? Brutal!!
His stat line 22-23 was 46 games 3+19=22
He had twice as many points in his draft year as this year in 11 less games. Clear statistical regression well beyond expectations even on a team that was worse.
Josi went from 8 points his draft year to 24 the next, real progression (300% increase) so I don’t see the merit in your Josi argument.

Let’s see how other draft eligible defenseman in that league with .3 ppg do in the nhl draft this year, lol.

Yes one game in the AHL with mixed reviews. But he did match his goal total from Kloten. Maybe we should flip him for Bedard.

There are red flags about this prospect despite your denials. I want him to succeed, why wouldn’t I? I liked what he said in his interview the other day. Nice young man and I wish him well. Hutson and mailloux both have taken steps forward this year. Do you think David did?


The fact you called his first game one with “mixed reviews” says everything we need to know about ur immense negative bias towards the kid.

The point regression has a context. That was my point. Everyone on the team regressed, it was a terrible situation. To expect him to suddenly jump leaps and bounds when everyone around him is falling on their face is ridiculous. The season that provides the most insight in a situation like this is his draft yr cuz it allowed us to see what he can do when he isn’t dealing with an insane situation. And he didn’t disappoint.
But even with all this insanity, he outproduced grown men in a pro league playing like half the games, and you’re just brushing that off? Considering he’s a more defensive minded player, that’s pretty fantastic.

Just say you hate reinbacher and save some time…


It seems that you don’t comprehend what you read very well, but you speak of what you know, biased opinions. Did my legitimate doubts about his play and opposing your “ he’s the greatest prospect in hockey history” narrative as inaccurate trigger you?

Articles I read that were written throughout the season reported weight gain issues and inconsistent play combined with injuries and instability as the reasons for his poor performance
I never saw him play, but I did follow him as much as I could. Good think I didn’t critique Mesar or you might be permanently damaged.


For the love of god fix the ads/how often this site refreshes…. Doesn’t matter where I am, what connection, what device… type in two seconds or lose the comment. Shouldn’t have to write on Notes to comment on an article…. Best habs site, by far… but u gotta fix this