Martin St-Louis Breaks the silence regarding Xhekaj and it's causing a huge reaction

Elias Edmonson
February 13, 2024  (7:39 PM)

Photo of Canadiens head coach Martin St-Louis and Xhekaj
Photo credit: Screenshot/X

As the young defenseman Arber Xhekaj will finally return to the Montreal Canadiens' lineup tonight, due to the injury suffered by Jordan Harris, we wanted to revisit an interesting statement by Martin St-Louis.

In a press conference, the head coach of the Montreal Canadiens was asked about having very young defensemen, like Arber Xhekaj, who sometimes make mistakes but are in the midst of the learning process.

Does Arber Xhekaj have a shorter leash?

How to manage this?
And if we go further, especially in the case of Xhekaj, is it a good idea to send him to the stands at the slightest mistake?
See Martin St-Louis's answer:
"Martin St-Louis, on young defensemen (like Xhekaj): "Sometimes we forget how young they are, especially at this position; defenseman is a difficult position to play in this League at a young age.

They will have difficult appearances, they will have bad games, but what we have in this department is very promising in general."

- Via Priyanta Emrith

There are different ways to interpret his answer, especially since he did not specifically answer for Xhekaj, but in general.
St-Louis seems open to accepting mistakes from his young defensemen, but for one reason or another, he seems stricter with Arber Xhekaj. (as you can see in the comments)
Certainly, the young player will have an important opportunity to impress Martin St-Louis tonight, and he must seize it.
He will need to have a big game if he wants to stay away from the stands and the disfavors of his coach.
Facing the Ducks tonight, Xhekaj will be paired with Johnatan Kovacevic on the third defensive pair.
Aged 23, the young defenseman of 6 feet 4 inches and 240 pounds has accumulated four points in 21 games this season in the NHL, with a positive differential of +1 and 53 penalty minutes.
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Martin St-Louis Breaks the silence regarding Xhekaj and it's causing a huge reaction

Do you believe Kent Hughes will have to trade Arber Xhekaj if this continues?

Yes13718.7 %
No, we're keeping him59581.3 %
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