Laval Rocket will open AHL season at home on Oct. 6

The Laval Rocket will open the 2017-18 AHL season by playing their first four games at home.

The Canadiens’ AHL farm club has moved to Laval after spending the last two seasons in St. John’s, where they were the IceCaps. The Rocket will play their home games at the new Place Bell in Laval.

The Rocket’s first game will be on Friday, Oct. 6 at 7:30 p.m. against the Belleville Senators and the same two teams will meet again the next night at 7:30 p.m. 

The following weekend, the Binghamton Devils will visit Place Bell for games on Friday, Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 14 at 3 p.m.

Single-game tickets for the Rocket don’t go on sale until Sept. 4. The club is now selling six-game packages — which include the season opener — with ticket prices ranging from $20 to $26 per game.

(Photo: Marie-France Coallier/Montreal Gazette)

• Rocket 2017-18 AHL schedule

127 Comments

  1. RightNyder says:

    Shea Weber, career splits

    Pre all-star game:
    590 GP 128-232-360 +69 .61 Pts/G 23 GWG
    Stud

    Post all-star game:
    251 GP 55-70-125 -1 .498 Pts/G 5 GWG
    Pud

    With Montreal
    Pre all-star game
    50 GP 12-19-31 +18 .62 Pts/G 4 GWG 10 PPG 30 PIM
    Stud

    Post all-star game
    28 GP 5-6-11 +1 .39 Pts/G 0 GWG 2 PPG 8 PIM
    Pud

    Playoffs
    Career
    65 GP 14-17-31 -8 .476 Pts/G 3 GWG 6 PPG
    Pud

    With Montreal
    6 GP 1-2-3 +1 .5 Pts/G 1 GWG 1 PPG
    Spud

    OK, now obviously Weber wasn’t a pud, I’m just amusing myself. But there’s a very clear decline in the numbers after the all-star game. I’d love to hear your theories for this.

    Plays a physical style and gets dinged up/tired? Games are tougher/closer down the stretch and in the playoffs? Teams focus on him more?

    Interestingly, his goal rate remains fairly constant, while his assist rate drops off. Trying to conserve energy, so carries the puck even less? Forwards tired? Always playing against other team’s top lines, so scoring even harder for his guys?

    Anyway, for whatever reason, Weber’s not as studly down the stretch. I’d say that it would be more of a concern as he gets older, but it’s been so remarkably consistent, I don’t think that’s a factor for another few years yet.

    My biggest concern at this point? Surely pairing him with scoreless Alzner and/or 119-year-old Streit won’t help buck that trend.

    Anyone have a solution?

  2. on2ndthought says:

    As far as hockey being boring; average goals per game per team has been slowly but steadily climbing since a nadir in 2011 (those great BOS LAK championship years).

    https://www.sportingcharts.com/articles/nhl/average-goals-scored-per-game-in-the-nhl.aspx

    For comparison, here are the average goals per team per game (so double to get average goals per game) last year in the best leagues:
    SHL: 2.46
    KHL: 2.47
    NHL: 2.77
    AHL: 2.82

    Habs were average (2.76)

    “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

    • johnnylarue says:

      Quantity vs quality? How many of those were shots from the blue line that bounced in off three separate asses before landing in the net because “that’s how goals get scored now”?

    • RightNyder says:

      “Habs were average”

      Betterthannothing™!

      I guess we should feel blessed we’ve got the coach whose team mugged and hooked and held its way to glory in 2011…

  3. kalevine says:

    hmm, not banned apparently 🙂

  4. krob1000 says:

    allegedly 1.5 million and 1 yr contract offer for streit? sign him up…

  5. krob1000 says:

    allegedly 1.5 I yr contract offer for streit? sign him up…

  6. krob1000 says:

    Streit-Weber
    Alzner-Petry
    Benn-Schelmko/Davidson/Morrow/Jerabek

    That is fine by me….

  7. FenceSurfer says:

    Streit’s agent will later say the Habs never approached him about his client, à la Markov/Flyers. All part of the negotiations I’m sure.

  8. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Love the idea of having the farm team right there with the Habs. Good all around and especially for the developing players.

  9. derfab says:

    Forget Markov and go all in after a young gun like Horvat or Palat or…? Much better value than a late first and third pick…and puts cap pressure on other teams….maybe exposes someone else…? Make something happenen Marc!

    • on2ndthought says:

      gotta get someone pushing 40 for the blueline

      • Don Birnam says:

        Isn’t he a slickskating fancy puck moving D man that people here want?

        Viva Timo Libre!

        • krob1000 says:

          With a rocket from the point and vet smarts….I am fine with him as a default guy….he could step in and play with Weber IMO just like Markov.

          Can anchor a pp and the dual threat of rockets from both point son a pp is pretty enticing.

          A known quantity and someone who may want to play in Montreal….I know we all want a center but I can see MB possibly working this so tam would wind up with BOTH Streit and Markov

          • on2ndthought says:

            No problem with Markov, Streit, DaCosta… whomever. As long as the contracts are reasonable enough that they can be placed on waivers (Markov excepted) if they are beaten out for a job by Jerabek, DLR, Hudon, McCarron etc.

            “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

  10. thewatchman says:

    Rumors Montreal might be trying to sign Stephane Da Costa out of the KHL former Senator.

  11. BC (Because of the Cats) says:

    I like krob’s optimism farther down about our prospects, and I tend to share it. I think we have good depth in our system at all positions except centre; and perhaps, with the acquisition of Ryan Poehling and Joni Ikonen at the draft, this will eventually change. I find the mounting criticism of our drafting and development program premature; players chosen under Bergevin’s watch are only just beginning to come through. We should at least wait and see how they progress.

    One thing stands out for me: Bergevin himself has confidence in his long-term plan and in the hockey people he’s brought in, otherwise he would have bowed to the repeated barrages of criticism over the last couple of years. Criticism of his decisions, criticism of the coaching staff, criticism of the guys working with the AHL team. Begevin has stood firm in the face of all this and in the face of disappointing results. I think this is not simply stubbornness or blind loyalty, since he did eventually fire Therrien when the opportunity to hire a good replacement presented itself. I think he really does believe in the people who are working for him. It is perhaps telling also that Claude Julien apparently does not intend to change the assistants. He must see something in them.

    I don’t like the cap hit of the Price contract. I would have liked to see Price settle for less in the interests of building a stronger team around him, but I guess things like this seldom happen in the real world. And Bergevin still needs to plug the gaping hole at centre, something I can’t see happening this summer. But otherwise I don’t dislike what he’s done and feel cautiously optimistic — not so much for the coming season as for the one after that.

    “We gotta lotta dep.”

    • Cal says:

      There’s hope as long as Tavares hasn’t signed yet with the Islanders. IF he decides he’s had enough, he may be open to signing elsewhere next July. He’ll be 27 and in his prime.

    • Kylo Ren says:

      Good post. Because of you and B, I am slowly coming around to believing we aren’t as badly off for prospects as I used to think. A few years ago, all of us had an obsession with size and grit. Perhaps the evolution to a game based more on speed and skill was difficult even for NHL management to predict – especially since we had thought the game would evolve that way when Gainey was GM, only to find it hadn’t. The playoffs are still a war of attrition, so you can’t have only skilled players on your roster. I found it very telling that Pittsburgh chose not to draft Klim Kostin but traded that pick to the Blues for Reaves.

      I also don’t like the Price contract but that’s partly because any new contract amount is always a paradigm shift, and we all find it difficult to accept change. Toews and Kane set the mark a couple of years ago for what Price would get. In my view, the Price contract is better than Subban’s, Fowler’s or Vlasic’s. I think it’s even better than Radulov’s with Dallas.

      I also think Bergevin has done a good job. I find the constant disparaging of what he has done tiresome (even if he hasn’t found a solution to the gaping hole at center). Often, the criticism is an end to itself. Rarely are useful counter proposals ever offered. Dipsy Doodler quotes, very appropriately, the Dunning-Kruger effect. That applies also to comments about Sylvain Lefebvre and JJ Daigneault – who, as you point out, has been retained by Claude Julien.

    • 24 Cups says:

      The list is based on 25 years and under so that means that Montreal should have five forwards from that list on their forward lines. Assuming these players all buy into Julien’s defense first mantra, they should notch the following totals:
      Galchenyuk = 25/35/60
      Drouin = 25/40/65
      Danault = 12/22/34
      Lehkonen = 15/23/38
      Hudon = 10/15/25

      DLR and McCarron may also make the team but I wouldn’t expect much from them in terms of point totals.

      There are no young players 25 and under who will make the D but I feel confident that Lindgren will be able to hold his own if one of the other goalies gets hurt.

      • B says:

        Isn’t Gallagher 25?

        FWIW, last season, Montreal had 117 regular season and 10 playoff games played by Dmen 25 years old or younger.

        –Go Habs Go!–

    • Lapointe says:

      BC..while it is good to be positive when there is a glimpse of hope personally I think your points are too positive based on the last few years. The team as one poster (nextguy) points out just below is so absolutely boring to watch and I wonder why people pay the enormous dollars to watch them. The team is soft and getting softer by the year. How anyone can see this team as a real contender to win the cup is a staggering conclusion. Once they make the playoffs and I do think they will again this year but it will be close I am sure they will get out muscled and the intensity of the opponent will give the same results as the past nearly quarter of a decade. They have one chance at the trough and that is CP can play at the very top of his game and steal a couple games each round. So far CP has been much less than stellar in the playoffs I think most would agree on that.

      CJ keeping the AHL coaches means something to some but the record of the AHL coaches means something to me….with out a a winning team in the AHL this parent team cannot and I mean cannot develop into anything serious. Many of the teams prospects are in serious trouble making the big team and it stands to reason if you can’t win in the AHL year after year and other teams are having success then you already in the muck. I hear Bob Gainey and his decision on building the team as a reason they are still struggling 5-6 years after he left. Well that is BS and for the people that still think that go back and research the reasons why he blew up the team. MB is and was over rated (in the minds of HIO posters ) for what must be a very, very difficult job. So to close this off I just say I am hoping for the best and expecting not such a great season for our once glorious team.

      • Loop_G says:

        The “soft” think just is not real, but most teams are boring to watch most of the time, depending on what you are looking for. Tickets are simply too expensive for most people though. In my home we have two professionals and a 6 year old but to go see a game would have to be planned the same way we would plan a vacation or special event. It used to be you could just go to the game once in a while on a whim, but no more. We are closer to Toronto, only an hour away but it would still cost us $1000 to go there for dinner and a game when all costs are included.

        • on2ndthought says:

          You’ve got to incorporate and then write the tickets off as ‘entertainment’.

          “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

  12. nextguy says:

    Watching the Habs live sucks. Ticket prices are ridiculous and crossing the bridges (those damn bridges…) to get to Montreal is the worst. And public transit… I mean there is one metro to service the entire island of Laval so if you live on the far eastern or western edge like I do, it is a long drive to get to the metro and parking is non-existent… I’m ranting now huh?

    Looking forward to having the Rocket in Laval. Laval is a big city with some very wealthy areas that I hope can sustain the team. The only competition for live hockey is the Armada where ticket prices are a bit higher.

  13. HabsFanInTampa says:

    Growing up in Chomedey, Laval. I would’ve loved for the Canadiens’ farm team to play in my backyard like they will now. Great news for the community to have the Laval Rocket playing there.

  14. Mavid says:

    85

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

    Weed Wacker – and Flamethrower Grandma Smurf

    • on2ndthought says:

      From PEI, he played 3 games for the Habs, before being signed by the Blues last year. He is heading to Sweden next year.

      “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

  15. CHesterfield says:


    I was unsure of the new regime as any. MT as new coach. What am I cheering for. But teams of ’86 and ’93 were d first on paper. we want a better entertainment, they give us wins. I am now absolutely unsure how much entertainment I can take without a win as much as, hey we were poor then, rich now. Win by goals scored dummies. No patience, montreal, win now! Make your money.

  16. RightNyder says:

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-most-important-moves-of-the-nhls-free-agent-frenzy/?addata=espn:nhl:index

    This jumped out at me:
    “Alzner actually doesn’t do a whole lot very well.”

    Also this:
    “At 38, and still playing more than 21 minutes per game, (Markov) drove possession at the best rate of his career… Montreal would be foolish not to re-sign their longest-tenured player.”

    • CHesterfield says:

      Alzner -Petry will be an excellent pairing. Wishfull/ faithful.

    • Gerry Pigeon says:

      Suspect source. Can’t argue with his assessment of Alzner, but think he overvalues Markov a bit.

      Foolish not to re-sign Markov, easy enough to claim. But at what price is MB foolish to successfully re-sign Markov? Is $6M for one year okay? How about $7M? Do we expect a 38 year old to have the same season as last year’s pace, without the injury games off? Is MB reasonable to expect Markov to play first pairing minutes alongside Weber? If not, should MB pay a second pairing minutes defender $7M?

      Is it all up to MB? Isn’t it foolish for Markov not to consider a one year contract from the Habs? If all he’s looking for is two years, but hasn’t signed yet with another team, then how many suitors are interested in taking a two year chance on Markov’s multiple knee operations at 38? None?

      Come home Marky, sign the one year contract MB has offered. Who’s kidding whom? Habs want you back, you want to be back. Habs have taken plenty of chances on your surgically repaired knees in the past. How about a little payback? You’re not giving away multiple years and many millions to stay. In fact, you’re not giving away anything, cause no one else has offered it apparently. If you play well, and none of the new D-men fair any better, you’ll get your second year, and maybe even more than $6M…

      • Ian_from_Niagara says:

        Well stated!

      • Colonel Hogan says:

        Well said.

        The biggest issue isn’t if Markov is worth $6m of Molson money. The issue is how that ties up Cap space, more next year than this. Assuming of course you can obtain a player (Centre, Winger or D) that IS worth the Cap space.

        That said, there is a hole in the “puck moving defenceman” space

        But seriously folks…..

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Letting go of Radulov and Markov while signing Alzner (and Hemsky) seems pretty foolish, when you look at the the numbers.

      —–

    • Loop_G says:

      Alzner is not world class in any respect of his game, but he is a really good solid player and teammate, and far better than Emelin at roughly the same price. He does not replace Markov and was not intended to, the team will badly miss Markov if he does not return.

    • on2ndthought says:

      The guy is a Boston Bozo. The GAR he quotes is really just a modified Corsi, no accounting for role.

      Analytics did’t like Alzner this year. Know why? Because he played with two partners. Each time they were given the shut down role. The spreadsheets show both Niskanen and Carlsson are better offensively when they are away from Alzner (and the shut down role he was deployed in).

      Interesting looking at the advanced stats that he based his GAR on. Of course, as expected, Alzner had by far the highest D-zone % starts at 54% (the only two others who were [.1 and .4] above 50% were the two that paired with him for half the year each).

      What was surprising is that Eller started over 55% in the O-zone; Beagle was the ‘go to’ D-zone center for WSH.

      “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

    • tophab says:

      markov was our best dman last year. yes better than weber.

  17. CHesterfield says:

    OK so strategy. I am bad at playing hocking. It is a sport of formula 1, with pro tennis and all out australian rules football, but faster, on ice, with canadian rules agro. How do you make new strategies? Definitely let the Chinese, Koreans and Japanese get going. Still do not understand the boycott. Yes it eats away at regular season, but the world has to embrace this no? NHL is being stupid short sighted.

  18. CHesterfield says:

    Teams under MB selection are fast starts. Fastestest would be shortened post-lock-out where the CH slumped in, 45 games.., post season like usual regular season. I do not like ottawa anymore. Chances are same, but am excited what +1 after figuring out the Genaral’s signing will give. I think it is the guy from LA- Tofolli who is last addition. No good reason or cost.

  19. 24 Cups says:

    Here is a list of Hab players and prospects who are 25 and under in terms of age. Does this list inspire optimism or pessimism on your part?

    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/EOTPT25U25

    • bwoar says:

      Must be hard carrying that anchor around all the time. Considering how easy it is to simply set it down, one wonders why folks insist on carrying it day in, day out.

    • Bash says:

      Not height? 🙂

      “Damn it Jim I’m not a doctor; I’m a hockey expert.”

    • krob1000 says:

      optimism…..I actually like the fact the team has two 3rd overalls entering prime years, I like that there are several solid two way players that are affordable.
      I like that Danault is still that young as he is a steay two way guy that can possibly replace Pleks (possibly Hudon too)I like that Lehkonen appears to be the equivalent of a middle first rounder. I see plenty of steady talent in Hudon, DLR,…some wildcards with top 6 potential in Scherbak and Ikonen. I think Poehling will be a steady no 2 eventually. then ther is the odd one like Reway who could boom or bust.

      The D does not appear to have a top pairing guy in there…..but ….I see depth guys like Lernout, potential in guys like Mete who is an exceptional skater. I see Juulsen who may win up a top pairing guy but worst I feel he will be a top 4 guy.

      I see depth in nets…..and lets not forget there are only so many spots to be had…..12 forward spots and really only 9 or 10 that will see special team duty as well. You need vets and long term guys mixed in and same on D…..with Alzner, Petry and Weber there are really only 3 spots up for grabs….one top 4 over next couple of years to fight for…..we have enough viable candidates.

      None of this is factoring in free agency, trades, a bad year where you acquire assets…..what will happen before season….

      I am not as optimistic as I would have been had the team locked up the old guy in Rad….in fact I think the team needs more vets up front …ideally at center but Rad worked too….

      I am comfortable with the pool…..hurt losing Sergachev…but worth it
      Hurt losing Nate more though as I feel that was a loss

      All in all though I like the overall picture…just that gaping hole in middle….have to let him run or make a move…..wings are strong, depth farm is about to harvest.

      • CHesterfield says:

        Do you find new generation of touch screen better? My ‘dumb’ fingers now register the right letters.

      • RightNyder says:

        Two No. 3s, two No. 5s and a No. 6 overall. Overflowing with elite-level picks! (Who says you need to tank?)

        Also, Danault was a first-rounder. And Joe Morrow (swoon). And Pacioretty. And McCarron. And Scherbak. And Hemsky.

        11 first-rounders. My tumescence suddenly knows no bounds. I’m applying for a temporary Polly pass.

        I hope they’ll welcome me with open arms.

        • krob1000 says:

          I am not as concerned with the under 25 talent as I am with the lack of talent in numbers in prime ages 25-30. We have a wide variety ….but only one legit star forward in his prime and while a bargain he is not the gamechanger type…Drouin and Chucky IMO are….those two will score a ton of clutch goals for years to come if they keep Chucky

          Glachenyuk/Drouin is actually a pretty electrifying duo for a competitive team to have…..but how they are deployed and trusted will be a factor….

          • RightNyder says:

            Preaching to the choir.

            The ‘core behind the core’ necessary to make a Cup run just hasn’t been there. Whiffs in the ’06, ’08, ’09 and now ’11 drafts were killer.
            Just one contributor (Gallagher) coming out of those years.

            Now, even if we make the leap that the kids are alright, by the time they are ‘prime-prime’ together, the older guys may have aged out.

            It’s been an ill-fitting puzzle for a long time. Lots of nice pieces. Just don’t all go together.

            Still looking forward to Drouin and Galchenyuk together, though. (Which for sure means they’ll be split up or Galchenyuk will be flogged for a defensive defenceman).

      • on2ndthought says:

        I’m optimistic that many of these players are going to find it hard to crack our lineup and contribute. That is as it should be.

        Beaulieu needs to learn how to play defense, let him do that in Buffalo.

        “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

    • CHesterfield says:

      Ayoyye! Super optimistic! Any amount of surprise, come on Thrower you darkest of dark horses, will make it, the rest, league average for not?! I think of the CH as an analogy to the Expos. Market share to the ROC is not fair, but the CH managed to organize their own coverage, sort of. Imagine if the Expos managed to figure out and broadcast via internet by modest subscription or free pre-2004. Walker would be back, as coach! Martinez! Griffon! Guarrero!

  20. montreal ace says:

    Huberdeau and Matheson from Florida, for Chucky,Pleks while taking back salary with draft choices, or players with salary

  21. on2ndthought says:

    Hey, Captain Alex! Missed your birthday yesterday. Wow, 16 years old! Have a fabulous year!

  22. Bellacoola says:

    As injury prone as the Penguins have been the last couple of years I’m sure it is quite comforting to know they will have Dr. Mark Recchi as an assistant coach next season

  23. PK says:

    I wonder if Recchi is going to run out on the ice every time a Penguins player is injured, help stabilize the medical issue.

    Hope so.

  24. Cal says:

    If the AHL Rocket want to succeed, no home games on a Hab game night.
    A little tv exposure- probably RDS- will go a long way to securing the Rocket’s future.
    Frankly, I give it about 2 years before it starts bleeding money because the locals won’t support it.

  25. DipsyDoodler says:

    I wouldn’t worry about the Jagr rumours.

    Every year it’s the same thing: Montreal are interested, Eklund picks it up, and then he signs somewhere else.

    I think he’s the one leaking these stories.

    —–

  26. Phil C says:

    I wonder how this experiment will work in Montreal. The AHL team will get a lot more press and fan attention than they are used to.

  27. B says:

    Arizona hired Tocchet as their new head coach

    –Go Habs Go!–

  28. deGaspe says:

    What is happening with Markov? Is he discovering that his demands are not going to be met anywhere in the league and so he should take a reasonable deal and finish a Hab?

    • Loop_G says:

      That is likely part of it, but also he just got married so that was likely a distraction. If he were terribly concerned about free agency he would not have planned his wedding for right after it. The other part is that this is a very rich man who is simply taking his time and does not feel a lot of pressure either way.

  29. piper says:

    I hope the Jagr rumours are BS. Too late now.

    • johnnylarue says:

      But hang on–the Eklund piece clearly states, “Habs interested in Jagr + working time machine – E4”.

      They’re apparently still hashing out the details with the guy who wrote “Interstellar”…

    • on2ndthought says:

      I thought we were getting rid of our party animals.

      “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

  30. lavie says:

    Second to say, a lot of affordable pro Hockey games to attend!

  31. on2ndthought says:

    First to welcome the Rocket to Laval. I’ll probably skip opening night, but plan on attending all the Friday games when the Habs aren’t playing. Pumped up!

    “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes

    • johnnylarue says:

      I hope the Rocket fail and keep failing until the Habs are forced to move the farm to Vancouver. THEN I’ll be pumped!

      • on2ndthought says:

        It seems that the scouting crew spends a fair amount of time in your neck of the woods; so there’s that.

        “Please. This isn’t a bar fight. Have some class.” – Adrian Tepes


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