MONTREAL – The head coach of the Canadian, Claude Julien, asked his players to approach the final seven games of the season as a playoff series, and his troop has failed its first test on Saturday.
Despite a good start to the game, montreal was quickly reversed by the Washington Capitals, who have managed to exploit the shortcomings of the Habs in their zone to spin to a victory of 6-4.
The players of Canada have committed 16 turnovers during the game, including 13 of the part of the defenders, and another from goalie Carey Price.
If we could anticipate that these are the young Noah Juulsen and Brett Lernout, who would be the main culprits, rather they are players more experienced who have had trouble with this chapter in the face of the Capitals. Jordie Benn has been credited with four turnovers, while Jeff Petry and Mike Reilly have committed three each. Karl Alzner, Juulsen and Lernout has been credited to a single shift each.
These shifts have often allowed the Capitals to extend their presence in the area of Canadian and to get opportunities to score from the enclave.
“This is one of the aspects of the game that we hurt most by this time, acknowledged Julien after the game. Again, there are a lot of new defenders, when we think of Reilly or Lernout. Even the side of the attackers, we are working with (Nikita) Scherbak, for which it is still difficult, and even (Alex) Galchenyuk, for which it has been the same thing this evening. These are situations where we must improve.
“At the same time, it comes back to a lack of experience. At the beginning of the season, and even in the first half, was not given as many opportunities because the players were in their place. It is certain that in the past few weeks, it gives too much chance from the enclave.”
Veterans defenders Shea Weber and David Schlemko, and the brilliant rookie Victor Mete, are all injured at the Canadian, and it is therefore difficult currently to assess the value of the montreal defensive.
On his side, the attacker Brendan Gallagher played his 400th career game in the NHL, refused to use inexperience as an excuse for the ineffectiveness of the defense of the Habs even if half of the brigade’s Canadian Saturday had fewer than 100 parties of seniority in the NHL.
“This is an opportunity to learn and gain experience,” said Gallagher, who has scored 115 goals and 117 aid up here in the NHL. Yes, we’re not going to participate in the series and it is disappointing. But we can’t waste those matches. We need to build foundations for the next season. The young players should take advantage of this opportunity to improve their chances of winning a regular position, or to force the veterans to grow.”
The Canadian has participated in the series during the first three seasons of Gallagher in the NHL, but he will not be in the tournament this spring for the second time in three years. Gallagher acknowledged that it was not necessarily the best context for a young person who arrives in the NHL, but he hoped still to see them take this opportunity.
“It is certain that you prefer to find yourself in a winning culture. This season, we didn’t win a lot of games, but it is important to continue to preach good things and to do the right things, recalled Gallagher. Not everything is going to change a shot next fall. We need to take advantage of these last few games to prepare. It is necessary to create a climate of internal competition, because it is that which will help us improve and grow as a team.”
The Canadian will play the second of its latest series to seven games Monday when it hosts the Detroit Red Wings. This duel will be the last of a sequence of 12 21 days for the Habs. The men of Claude Julien to resume then the necklace only on Saturday, when they will visit the Pittsburgh Penguins.