In this surprising start to the season for the Montreal Canadiens, experts and analysts are looking at several factors. Among them, perhaps none has inspired telephone forums and fueled debate as much as the case of Juraj Slafkowski.
The first overall pick in the last NHL auction became the youngest Slovak player to score his first goal at Bettman Circuit last Thursday. On the other hand, he evolves in the fourth line and must do his classes with ice time, also limited to five characters against five.
Colleague and friendly host of the show dose Jean-Philippe Bertrand recently compared Slafkowski to Pierre-Marc Bouchard of the Minnesota Wild. It was 20 years ago and the head coach was named Jacques Lemaire.
The Hall of Fame member can’t remember and can’t imagine how much ice time he granted the Quebec rookie in 2002. Affirmed, played 12 minutes and 12 seconds in his first game. His average that season was slightly higher: 13:16.
Like Bouchard and Gaborik
Before a mysterious upper body injury sidelined him for Saturday’s game, Slafkowski ranked last on the team with 11:26 average playing time. Is it surprising? The answer is no.
“First, every person is different. It depends on what the youngster brings to the team and his maturity, Lemire said in a generous phone interview with TVASports.ca over the weekend. How he behaves on the ice, how he wants to play and how he learns. Every person is different. “
A coach’s challenge in development? Develop the foal without damaging his self-esteem.
“You should definitely consider who you’re sending him against…