Categories
IceCaps news

Bulldogs News: Training Camp, First Win, Roster Choices

By Dale Lamontagne | @Dale_Lamontagne , Bulldogs Hockey Report

 

(Photo by HamiltonBulldogs.com)
(Photo by HamiltonBulldogs.com)
Hamilton Bulldogs News. Got a tip? Send us an email: info@allhabs.net or tweet us: @BulldogsReport !

 Training camp: October 3

  • Pre-game skate – Gander Community Centre (Gander, N.L.) – 11:15 a.m.
  • Game vs. St. John’s IceCaps – Gander Community Centre (Gander, N.L.) – 7 p.m.
  • In case you missed it, Bulldogs Hockey Report photographer, Rabita, was at the opening day of Bulldogs training camp to capture photos and audio. You can find her report here.

Upcoming:

Saturday, Oct. 4
Practice – Gander Community Centre (Gander, N.L.) – 11:15 a.m.

Sunday, Oct. 5
Game vs. St. John’s IceCaps – Mile One Centre (St. John’s, N.L.) – 4 p.m.

 Bulldogs win first pre-season game

  • The Hamilton Bulldogs defeated the St. John’s IceCaps 3-2 in the first preseason game of 2014.
  • Rick Stephens put together a good summary of the game which can be found here including video highlights.
  • The Bulldogs will take on the IceCaps again tonight, which can be heard on 900 CHML.

Bulldogs Roster – who makes it?

  • The roster for the Hamilton Bulldogs training camp stands at 32 players, including 18 forwards, 11 defencemen and 3 goaltenders.
  • The Bulldogs have added some really good depth to their forward core this summer, something we didn’t see a lot of last season.
  • It’s early, but here is my first look at players who are expected to make the Bulldogs opening night roster:

Forwards

Sven Andrighetto, T.J. Hensick, Jacob De La Rose, Christian Thomas, Maxime Macenauer, Charles Hudon, Patrick Holland, Jake Dowell, Gabriel Dumont, Nick Sorkin, Connor Crisp and Jack Nevins.

Defence

Mac Bennett, Greg Pateryn, Magnus Nygren, Jarred Tinordi, Morgan Ellis, Darren Dietz

Goaltenders

Joey MacDonald, Mike Condon

  • That leaves the following players on the bubble:

Forwards

Tim Bozon, Riley Brace

Defence

Davis Drewskie, Joe Finley, Dalton Thrower

  •  What do you think? Leave your comments in the space below.

Follow @BulldogsReport on Twitter! 

 

Categories
IceCaps news

Bulldogs Well-Represented at Habs Training Camp

(image via CBC.ca)
(image via CBC.ca)

HAMILTON, ON. — The Montreal Canadiens have announced a 64-man training camp roster, that features more than a handful of players from the 2013-14 Hamilton Bulldogs squad.

Here is the official list of players that will attend the Canadiens camp starting on Sept. 18 in Brossard, Quebec.

FORWARDS

  • ANDRIGHETTO, Sven
  • BOURNIVAL, Michaël
  • BOURQUE, Rene
  • BOWMAN, Drayson
  • BOZON, Tim
  • BRACE, Riley
  • CARR, Daniel
  • CRISP, Connor
  • DE LA ROSE, Jacob
  • DESHARNAIS, David
  • DOWELL, Jake
  • DUMONT, Gabriel
  • EBERLE, Tanner
  • ELLER, Lars
  • FOURNIER, Stefan
  • GALCHENYUK, Alex
  • GALLAGHER, Brendan
  • GILL, Sahir
  • GRÉGOIRE, Jeremy
  • HENSICK, T.J.
  • HOLLAND, Patrick
  • HUDON, Charles
  • MALHOTRA, Manny
  • McCARRON, Michael
  • MOEN, Travis
  • MOMESSO, Stefano
  • NEVINS, Jack
  • PACIORETTY, Max
  • PARENTEAU, Pierre-Alexandre
  • PLEKANEC, Tomas
  • PRUST, Brandon
  • SCHERBAK, Nikita
  • SEKAC, Jiri
  • SORKIN, Nick
  • THOMAS, Christian
  • WEISE, Dale
DEFENSEMEN

  • BAKER, Justin
  • BEAULIEU, Nathan
  • BENNETT, Mac
  • BOUILLON, Francis
  • CHOUINARD, Joel
  • DIETZ, Darren
  • DREWISKE, Davis
  • ELLIS, Morgan
  • EMELIN, Alexei
  • FINLEY, Joe
  • GILBERT, Tom
  • MAKOWSKI, David
  • MARKOV, Andrei
  • NYGREN, Magnus
  • PATERYN, Greg
  • SHEA, Bobby
  • SUBBAN, P.K.
  • THROWER, Dalton
  • TINORDI, Jarred
  • WARDLEY, Evan
  • WEAVER, Mike
  • YUEN, Zach
GOALIES

  • BUDAJ, Peter
  • CONDON, Michael
  • FUCALE, Zachary
  • MacDONALD, Joey
  • PRICE, Carey
  • TOKARSKI, Dustin

The players are expected to report to the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard, Quebec, where they will undergo medical exams on Thursday. The on-ice sessions are expected to start Friday.

The Bulldogs training camp will open shortly after the Habs’ main camp.  The team will make their to Newfoundland where they will battle the St. Johns IceCaps in a three-game series before kicking off the regular season on Oct. 11 in Rochester.

The Bulldogs home opener is on Oct. 17 against rivals Toronto Marlies at FirstOntario Centre.

Categories
Press release

Hamilton Bulldogs 2014-15 Schedule Released

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The 2014-2015 AHL schedule is now out. 

MILTON, ONT — The highly anticipated 76 game, 2014-2015 regular season American Hockey League schedule was released this morning, and we finally get to see who and where the Hamilton Bulldogs  will faceoff with in the 2014-’15 campaign.

The Bulldogs will open up the season on October 11th in Rochester against the Americans, and then their back-to-back home opener weekend will be on Friday, October 17th against the Toronto Marlies and then a tilt against the Rockford IceHogs on Saturday Oct. 18.

Schedule notes: 

  • The Bulldogs will meet the Toronto Marlies 12 times
  • The Bulldogs will have the opportunity to play two games in NHL arenas this season, including one in Montreal at the Bell Centre (their NHL affiliate Montreal Canadiens) against the Toronto Marlies. They will also play at First Niagara Centre, the home of the Buffalo Sabres,  against the Rochester Americans.Americans on October 29th.
  •  The Bulldogs longest home stand of the 2014-15 campaign goes from January 9th, 2015 until January 23rd, 2015, a total of seven games
  • Hamilton’s longest road trip will last 19 days, starting on March 10th, and ending on March 28th, a total of 8 games. 
  • 76 regular season games will be broadcast live on AM 900 CHML, 900chml.com and on AHLLive.com. Select games will be broadcast live on Cable 14 (locally in Hamilton.)

Games By Month Breakdown: 

October:  8
November: 12
December: 13
January: 12
February: 11
March: 12
April: 8

Full Schedule from Hamilton Bulldogs Media Release:

HAMILTON BULLDOGS 2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE
(All times local to home team, NHL affiliate in brackets)

Saturday, October 11th, 2014, 7:05 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres)
Friday, October 17th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, October 18th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Rockford IceHogs (Chicago Blackhawks) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, October 24th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Saturday, October 25th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – San Antonio Rampage (Florida Panthers) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Sunday, October 26th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – San Antonio Rampage (Florida Panthers) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Wednesday, October 29th, 2014, 7:05 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres) (First Niagara Center in Buffalo, New York)
Friday, October 31st, 2014, 12:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes)
Sunday, November 2nd, 2014, 1:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes)
Tuesday, November 4th, 2014, 10:15 a.m. – Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, November 7th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, November 8th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Thursday, November 13th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at St. John’s IceCaps (Winnipeg Jets)
Friday, November 14th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at St. John’s IceCaps (Winnipeg Jets)
Sunday, November 16th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Wednesday, November 19th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks)
Friday, November 21st, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Sunday, November 23rd, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Friday, November 28th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche)
Sunday, November 29th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames)
Friday, December 5th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, December 6th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Sunday, December 7th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Texas Stars (Dallas Stars) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Wednesday, December 10th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames)
Friday, December 12th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, December 13th, 2014, 7:35 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres)
Wednesday, December 17th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – St. John’s IceCaps (Winnipeg Jets) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, December 19th, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – St. John’s IceCaps (Winnipeg Jets) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Sunday, December 21st, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Texas Stars (Dallas Stars) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, December 26th, 2014, 1:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Saturday, December 27th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Tuesday, December 30th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Rockford IceHogs (Chicago Blackhawks)
Friday, January 2nd, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Chicago Wolves (St. Louis Blues)
Saturday, January 3rd, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Milwaukee Admirals (Nashville Predators)
Friday, January 9th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, January 10th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Sunday, January 11th, 2015, 3:00 p.m. – Oklahoma City Barons (Edmonton Oilers) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Wednesday, January 14th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Milwaukee Admirals (Nashville Predators) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, January 16th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Grand Rapids Griffins (Detroit Red Wings) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, January 17th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Grand Rapids Griffins (Detroit Red Wings) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, January 23rd, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, January 24th, 2015, 3:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Friday, January 30th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Iowa Wild (Minnesota Wild)
Saturday, January 31st, 2015, 12:30 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Iowa Wild (Minnesota Wild)
Friday, February 6th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Iowa Wild (Minnesota Wild) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, February 7th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche)
Tuesday, February 10th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Iowa Wild (Minnesota Wild) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, February 13th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Monday, February 16th, 2015, 1:00 p.m. – Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Wednesday, February 18th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, February 20th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Grand Rapids Griffins (Detroit Red Wings)
Saturday, February 21st, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Grand Rapids Griffins (Detroit Red Wings)
Tuesday, February 24th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks)
Friday, February 27th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, February 28th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Sunday, March 1st, 2015, 4:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks)
Wednesday, March 4th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Friday, March 6th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, March 7th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Tuesday, March 10th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames)
Friday, March 13th, 2015, 7:05 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres)
Sunday, March 15th, 2015, 2:00 p.m. – Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs) at Hamilton Bulldogs
(at Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec)
Saturday, March 21st, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at San Antonio Rampage (Florida Panthers)
Sunday, March 22nd, 2015, 4:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at San Antonio Rampage (Florida Panthers)
Wednesday, March 25th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Adirondack Flames (Calgary Flames)
Friday, March 27th, 2015, 7:05 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Rochester Americans (Buffalo Sabres)
Saturday, March 28th, 2015, 3:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Thursday, April 2nd, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Chicago Wolves (St. Louis Blues) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Saturday, April 4th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Tuesday, April 7th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Utica Comets (Vancouver Canucks)
Friday, April 10th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Texas Stars (Dallas Stars)
Saturday, April 11th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Texas Stars (Dallas Stars)
Tuesday, April 14th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Oklahoma City Barons (Edmonton Oilers)
Friday, April 17th, 2015, 7:30 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche)
Saturday, April 18th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. – Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche) at Hamilton Bulldogs

Categories
IceCaps news Press release

Bulldogs Sign Forward Jake Dowell to One-Year Contract

3WILD091813Dowell

MONTREAL, QUEBEC – Montreal Canadiens and Hamilton Bulldogs General Manager Marc Bergevin announced today the Bulldogs have signed forward Jake Dowell to a one-year American Hockey League contract for the 2014-2015 season.

Dowell split 2013-2014 between the National Hockey League’s Minnesota Wild and its AHL affiliate, the Iowa Wild. In one regular season game with Minnesota, the 29-year-old recorded no points and no penalty minutes. In 57 regular season games with Iowa, the Eau Claire, Wisconsin native registered 19 points (seven goals, 12 assists) and 56 penalty minutes.

A veteran of eight professional seasons, Dowell has participated in 462 NHL and AHL regular season games combined. In 305 career AHL regular season games with the Iowa Wild, Houston Aeros, Rockford IceHogs and Norfolk Admirals, the 6’0”, 204-pound forward has compiled 93 points (33 goals, 60 assists) and 386 penalty minutes. In 157 career NHL regular season games with the Minnesota Wild, Dallas Stars and Chicago Blackhawks, he has recorded 33 points (11 goals, 22 assists) and 133 penalty minutes. In 2013-2014, he was the recipient of the AHL’s Fred T. Hunt Memorial Award as the player who best exemplified qualities of sportsmanship, determination and dedication to hockey, voted on by the league’s players, coaches and media.

Before turning pro, Dowell played four seasons with the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s University of Wisconsin Badgers. In 159 career games with Wisconsin between 2003 and 2007, he recorded 90 points (42 goals, 48 assists) and 218 penalty minutes. As an amateur, he won an NCAA national championship with Wisconsin in 2006 and an International Ice Hockey Federation World Under-20 Championship with the United States in 2004.

Dowell was originally selected by the Blackhawks in the fifth round (140th overall) in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft.

 

Categories
IceCaps news Press release

Release: Bulldogs Sign Defenceman Bobby Shea to One-year Deal

BULLDOGS SIGN BOBBY SHEA TO ONE-YEAR CONTRACT

Hamilton Bulldogs Media Release

bobby-shea

MONTREAL, QUEBEC – Montreal Canadiens and Hamilton Bulldogs General Manager Marc Bergevin announced today the Bulldogs have signed defenceman Bobby Shea to a one-year, two-way American Hockey League / ECHL contract for the 2014-2015 season.

Shea split the 2013-2014 season between the AHL’s Rockford IceHogs and the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye. In 29 regular season games with Rockford, the 24-year-old recorded seven points (three goals, four assists) and 84 penalty minutes. In 19 regular season games with Toledo, the Harrison Township, Michigan native registered four points (two goals, two assists) and 22 penalty minutes.

The 5’11”, 201-pound defenceman turned professional with the ECHL’s Reading Royals at the end of the 2012-2013 season following a four-year collegiate career. In four regular season games with Reading in 2012-2013, he recorded one assist and 17 penalty minutes. Then, in 15 playoff games, he recorded three points (two goals, one assist) and 21 penalty minutes as he helped Reading capture the 2013 Kelly Cup championship.

Before turing pro, Shea played four seasons with the Bowling Green State University Falcons. In 139 career regular season games with Bowling Green from 2009 to 2013, he recorded 36 points (nine goals, 27 assists) and 239 penalty minutes.

Categories
Feature

A First Look at Hamilton Bulldogs 2014-15 Lineup

By Dale Lamontagne, Lead Correspondent, Bulldogs Hockey Report

(Photo by Hamilton Bulldogs)
(Photo by Hamilton Bulldogs)

MILTON, ON. — The Hamilton Bulldogs have added some veteran depth up front in signing T.J. Hensick to a one-year deal on Thursday.

It’s no secret the Bulldogs lack veteran help up the middle with just Jacob De La Rose and Gabriel Dumont  currently penciled in on the depth chart. But by adding Hensick, the Bulldogs get a proven forward at the AHL level that will likely center Sven Andrighetto and Christian Thomas on the first line, which could end up being the Bulldogs most offensive line in the 2014-15 campaign.

Hensick, 28, has 371 points in 363 AHL regular season games. He split the 2013-2014 season between the Hartford Wolf Pack and the Swedish Hockey League’s MODO.

In 42 games with Hartford, he scored 34 points (11 goals, 23 assists), and in 31 regular season games with MODO, he scored 15 points (four goals, 11 assists.)

Overall, this is a good depth move for the Bulldogs and I’d expect Hensick to score 30+ points next season, which is something the ‘Dogs desperately need.

There will be several changes in the 2014-15 Bulldogs lineup from last season with 18-goal man Mike Blunden being signed by the Tampa Bay Lightning and goaltender Devan Dubnyk being picked up by the Arizona Coyotes.

Forward Joonas Nattinen is a restricted free agent who received a qualifying offer from the Canadiens but he will be playing for MODO in the Swedish Eite League in the Fall. The Habs chose not to give qualifying offers to the following restricted free agents: forward Robert Czarnik and goaltender Peter Delmas.  Goalie Robert Mayer was released from the final year of his contract instead signing a three year deal with Genève-Servette HC of the Swiss hockey league.

With a hole in their goaltending depth resulting from the departures of Dubnyk, Delmas and Mayer, the Canadiens signed free agent Joey MacDonald to a one-year, two-way deal. MacDonald will likely share the crease with Mike Condon who spent most of his season in the ECHL.

Jacob de la Rose has committed to playing in Canada this season and will likely center the second line.  It will be interesting to see what happens with defenseman Magnus Nygren who has declared that he will not go back to Hamilton after an unsatisfying experience both on and off the ice. Both parties are likely open to a trade.

Mac Bennett could get a chance to play with his Michigan teammate Greg Pateryn. The puck-moving Bennett paired with the stay-at-home Pateryn formed an effective duo for the Wolverines. Also on defense Dalton Thrower was signed to a three-year entry-level contract days after the conclusion of the Canadiens season.

In other changes the Habs finally parted ways with the underachieving Louis Leblanc trading him to the Anaheim Ducks for a conditional fifth round pick. Montreal decided to pass on signing Brady Vail and Erik Nystrom to entry-level contracts. Back in April, the Habs signed forwards Connor Crisp and Daniel Carr from the NCAA champion Union College Dutchmen to contracts. Rugged forward Jeremy Gregoire signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Canadiens but he has one more year of junior hockey left with Baie-Comeau Drakkar.

Below is an updated depth chart of the Bulldogs:

 

0vPGnCLGBulldogsDepthChartFinal2

 

As you can see, the Bulldogs lack veteran depth up front and on the back end whereas the goaltending situation seems fine.

Nonetheless, this signing is the start of many changes that need to be addressed in Hamilton.

Categories
IceCaps news

Canadiens Trade Louis Leblanc to Ducks for Conditional Fifth Round Pick

By Dale Lamontagne, Lead Correspondent, Bulldogs Hockey Report

MILTON, ON. — The Montreal Canadiens have traded forward Louis Leblanc to the Anaheim Ducks for a conditional fifth round pick in 2015.

(Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
(Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

“After three seasons with the Canadiens organization we felt that moving forward the best option for Louis and our organization was to give him the opportunity to pursue his career with another team,” said GM Marc Bergevin in the teams press release

“Throughout his entire stay with our organization Louis showed great professionalism and a constant desire to improve. We thank him for his contribution and wish him success for the continuation of his career.”

This deal makes very little sense to me. Why? Well because although Leblanc has had a difficult time cracking the Habs line up, and staying consistent with the Hamilton Bulldogs, he is still a main piece to the core group of players there. Yes, he has fallen as a prospect, but he could have definitely been a useful a player in Hamilton. I originally thought Montreal would offer him a one-year deal so he could prove himself, but I guess they had other plans.

The soon to be Restricted Free Agent, spent most of the season with the Bulldogs, where he scored 28 points in 17 games.

If Leblanc plays 15 games with the Ducks, the Habs will receive the 5th round pick in 2015.

 

 

 

Categories
Feature

What Should the Canadiens do With Budaj, Tokarski?

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

By Dale Lamontagne, Lead Correspondent, Bulldogs Hockey Report

About a year and a half ago, Montreal Canadiens fans thought the goaltending  position was weak. But now the Habs have Carey Price, Peter Budaj, Dustin Tokarski and Zachary Fucale in the organization. Pretty good, eh? 

MILTON, ON. — The Montreal Canadiens will have to decide what they are going to do with their back up goaltending situation this summer. Carey Price, Montreal’s starting netminder, was injured in Game 1 of third round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  Head coach Michel Therrien made the gutsy decision to start rookie Dustin Tokarski over NHL veteran Peter Budaj.

Although, the Habs lost Game 6 to the New York Rangers and were eliminated, I fully believe Therrien made the right call by giving Tokarski the chance to shine – and boy oh boy, did he look good out there! Tokarski played very well and he was able to give the Canadiens a legitimate shot at winning the series when many fans thought there was very little chance doing so.

So the question is, do the Habs send Tokarski down to the Hamilton Bulldogs and risk losing him to waivers, or do they trade him before, or after the draft? Another option is to send Budaj down to Hamilton to make room for Tokarski, or they can trade him for a draft pick. It is pretty obvious that the Canadiens will not get much in return for either goaltender, but it’s better to receive a draft pick than losing one of them to waivers and get nothing in return.

At this point, I think if they trade Budaj and keep Tokarski, the Habs are making the better decision. I know some fans believe Tokarski’s value is higher than the market would suggest, but if he is traded this offseason, the club won’t get as much as they would if they trade him within the next year or two. That’s if he plays well with the Habs in that time. With Zach Fucale in the pipeline, Tokarski will not be nothing more than just a backup in Montreal. So, I say build up his stock and then trade him within the next two years.

Budaj has one year left on his deal and I think his days in Montreal are numbered. It should be considered what Tokarski has done with the Habs this season. It has been incredible. There’s a reason why Montreal inked him a new two-year deal in early April, and it makes you wonder what the Habs are thinking about in goal. Tokarski has proved himself this season that he can handle the pressure and can jump into a game at any time.

There’s no doubt in my mind if the Habs decided to send Tokarski down to the Bulldogs he would be claimed off of waivers. And what would be the point in that, right? So, if Budaj is moved not much is lost and the club would gain a draft pick – which will be used in the future.

The summer in Montreal should be interesting, that’s for sure.