What's new for the Habs this season
Published Tuesday, October 6, 2015 8:57PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 6, 2015 9:14PM EDT
The Montreal Canadiens have made only three roster changes from the spring to opening night as the season begins Wednesday in Toronto.
The Habs are so established and experienced now that the changes from last season are very few. Here's what's new for 2015 - 2016.
Alexander Semin will look to restart his career on a line with Alex Galchenyuk, who moves to centre, as Lars Eller takes to the wing.
Eller and is even excited to do it, considering he finally gets second-line minutes.
“I’m really excited,” said Eller. “I get to play with two really highly skilled players and so far I think we enjoy playing and having fun and we can be productive if we keep working hard and compete, it could be really good.”
The other change at forward is Tomas Fleischmann, who made the most of his professional tryout and won a job on the third line with David Desharnais and Dale Weise.
“Me and my agent in the summer talked about what we want to do and where we want to go and Montreal was our number one choice for us. For the good fit and to be on a good team, a team that can make playoffs and win the Stanley Cup,” said the 31-year-old Czech winger.
The final roster change is in goal where Dustin Tokarski was outduelled by Mike Condon, who had an outstanding camp. Condon backs up hockey's best netminder Carey Price.
“He’s a hard-working guy,” said Price. “I’ve worked with guys like that before. He’s easy to get along with.”
“It's a business and it's tough and I know as quickly as it is given it can be taken away, so I am going to work my hardest to stay around as long as I can,” said Condon.
When the club is that established, it means it's time to make a charge -- time to win that Stanley Cup, and time to recognize that the window of opportunity is wide open now, but closing eventually.
“The reality is this is my 6th year and I'm 27 and Carey is 27 and Patch (Max Pacioretty) is 28, so we got guys that are getting up there and getting anxious to take that next step,” said P.K. Subban.
It was also a big day of roster moves for the Habs, as Jakob de la Rose was sent down to the minors in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
The club picked up on the waiver wire Paul Byron, who is a small centre who doesn't score much but does play good hockey.
The team also learned that Dustin Tokarski and Mark Barberio cleared waivers and they will go to the AHL as well.
Montreal Canadiens take on the Maple Leafs in their first game of the season Wednesday night at 7 p.m. on TSN 690.