The Canadiens were the focus of NHL.com’s 30 in 30 feature on Monday as the website continues its look at every team in the league heading into the 2013-14 season.
The “X-Factor” for the Canadiens, according to LNH.com managing editor Arpon Basu, is Andrei Markov and whether he can stay healthy for a full season.
Writes Basu: “The question is whether Markov, who turns 34 on Dec. 20, will be able to manage the rigors of a full 82-game slate – particularly in an Olympic year when the schedule will be similarly compressed, as it was last season?”
Basu adds: “Much of the team’s ability to improve its performance in the spring will depend on how well Markov manages his energy to maintain his level of play until then.”
In another 30 in 30 article, Basu asks: “Is Carey Price an elite goaltender?
“Price is certainly paid like one, topping the Canadiens payroll with a $6.5 million salary-cap charge, and he definitely has the talent to be among the NHL’s best,” Basu writes. “However he has yet to reach the upper echelon of his profession, and having turned 26 this past Friday, Price is leaving the realm of being considered young.”
You can read the entire NHL.com 30 in 30 feature on the Canadiens by clicking here.
Meanwhile, Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin announced on Monday that goaltender Dustin Tokarski has been signed to a one-year, two-way contract for the 2013-14 season.
Tokarski, 23, played 15 games with the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs in 2012-13, posting a 6-8 record with a 2.22 goals-against average and a .927 save percentage. The 5-foot-11, 198-pounder also played 33 games with the Syracuse Crunch, posting an 18-8-4 record, a 2.46 goals against average and a .900 save percentage.
The Humboldt, Sask., native was acquired from the Tampa Bay Lightning in return for goaltender Cédrick Desjardins on Feb. 14, 2013. He helped the Norfolk Admirals win the AHL’s Calder Cup in 2012.
(Photo by Dario Ayala/The Gazette)