"The Montreal Canadiens don't have a great pool of prospects." - Byron Bader

Published August 1, 2021 at 9:55

Let's face it, between 2008 and 2016, the Montreal Canadiens didn't have the success they expected in the first round of the NHL draft. They selected players with the potential to become NHLers, but didn't develop them well.

Here is the full list of players selected by the Canadiens in the first round between 2008 and 2016:

Byron Bader, an expert on advanced statistics and prospects, has profiled the Canadiens' bank of prospects. He said, among other things, that the Habs has some good prospects in the bank, but nothing exceptional.

He also mentioned that the Habs most recent first round picks reflect very well the team's failure over the last 5 to 10 years through the entry draft. However, Caufield would have to be the exception to the rule.

This means that Poehling, Kotkaniemi, Mailloux and Guhle will most likely not become stars, according to Byron Bader. Sergachev, the Canadiens' first pick in 2016, is one of the only players who has shown potential in the NHL among the Habs recent first round picks. The only problem is that Sergachev is now playing elsewhere, so it could be considered an internal failure. However, let's be patient, as it is far too early to make a final assessment on the Canadiens' prospects. Time will tell if Bader is right.

He still believes that some of the players in this pool of prospects have the potential to play in the NHL one day, but what about the elite potential? Bader firmly believes that the elite potential on the Habs roster is extremely low.

Nick Suzuki is no longer a prospect, but rather a regular player, and is no longer a prospect for the organization. Cole Caufield would be the best candidate to become a superstar in the NHL, among the organization's prospects. He has shown great offensive potential, especially in the playoffs alongside Nick Suzuki. Bader had nothing but good things to say about these two.

So if Byron Bader is right, we should be worried. The Habs roster (including all round picks) is good, but it might not have the potential to make a major impact at the NHL level. This includes Romanov, Guhle, Farrell, Norlinder, Harris, Primeau, Ylonen and others...

Trevor Timmins has often been criticized, but he has done a good job in the last few drafts. Maybe we should give him the benefit of the doubt, because after all, he didn't only do bad things...
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