Whitby - Sep. 19, 2011 - Training camp is now in full swing and the bleu-blanc-rouge faithful have seen two days of intra-squad scrimmages
in Brossard, Quebec. Key standouts on days two and three were hard hitting defenseman Alexei Yemelin and
hard-working right wing prospect, Brendan Gallagher (shown here), respectively.
Rumblings from the past seven days:
September 18 - Russian defenseman Alexei Yemelin impressed Habs Coach Jacques Martin on the first day of scrimmages with his physical play. “It was a really good performance by Yemelin,” conveyed Martin, “he brings an important physical game. He also knows how to get around the rink which could give us a great dimension to our defense squad”. Defenseman P.K. Subban did not dress on Sunday as he had the day off for preventative maintenance.
September 17 - Center Scott Gomez suffered a lower body injury and is day-to-day, as reported by NHL.com. Defenseman Brendan Nash, after a successful AHL season in Hamilton, has moved up the Canadiens’ organizational depth chart. Nash will be on the short-list of call ups if the defense corps begins to see multiple injuries on the club’s back end.
September 15 - Center Joonas Nattinen is still suffering from a groin injury that he has been rehabbing for the past month. Center Louis Leblanc’s condition is almost 100% as he recovers from off-season shoulder surgery. Defenseman Josh Gorges is reported to be 100% ready to go.
September 14 - Defenseman Yannick Weber will be a regular performer for the team this season according to Habs coach Jacques Martin. Weber played 41 games with the big club last year. This season he is expected to see time on the power play. Center Lars Eller should be ready to play when Montreal opens their regular season on October 6th against Toronto.
Dump and Chase
Training Camp Related News
By the end of the day today, the Habs will send some players home as they begin to make cuts in advance of Tuesday night’s pre-season game against the Dallas Stars. The Canadiens final intra-squad scrimmage will take place this morning and then the team will shift its focus to six pre-season contests over the next seven nights. Pre-season games between tonight and next Sunday include: September 20 vs DAL, September 21 vs MTL, September 23 vs OTT, September 24 vs OTT and September 25th vs BOS.
Thank you to www.canadiens.nhl.com , you will find attached a complete listing of the Canadiens 2011-12 training camp roster: HERE
On the Fly
Defenseman Diaz, Signs with Montreal, May 2011
Swiss born Rafael (Raphael) Diaz is not yet a household Habs name. The 25-year old native of Baar, Switzerland signed a one-year, two-way contract in May with the Canadiens. Rafael (5’9”, 194lbs) is an all-around skilled defenseman possessing both excellent offensive and defensive skills.
Diaz registered 39 points in 45 games with EV Zug last year in the Swiss-A league. He also displayed a plus-14 differential. Diaz was part of the Swiss team at both the 2005 and 2006 World Junior Championships and at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. Regarded as the best defenseman playing in Switzerland, Diaz garnered much attention at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics when he filled the role of New York Islanders’ defenseman, Mark Streit.
It is much too earlier to determine if Rafael Diaz will become a permanent fixture on the Canadiens’ blue line this season, but if the following clip is any indication, he should stand an excellent chance: CLIP
The first two real days of training camp has left me wanting more, much more. Players that have drawn my eye and attention have included Alexei Yemelin, Alain Berger, Mathieu Darche, Andreas Engqvist, Erik Cole and Jarred Tinordi. What excitement/intrigue will this week bring?
Until next time, play every game as if it is your last one…