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Earth No. 1 Canadiens, but there is no guarantee to choose Shane Wright

“If there’s a player that we feel is the best player available in the draft, that’s the one we’re going to have,” said general manager Kent Hughes.

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After winning the NHL draft lottery Tuesday night, Canadians will be selected first when the draft is held July 7-8 at the Bell Center, but there is no guarantee that they will use that selection to pick Shane Wright.

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The scouts ranked the Kingston Frontenacs center as the best for last year, but general manager Kent Hughes said on Tuesday there was a lot of work to be done before the Canadians could finalize their decision.

Canadians will stick to the tried and true rule that the team will select the best available player.

“You always have to follow your assessment first and if there is a player that we feel is the best player available in the draft, that is the player we are going to go with. If there are different shades of the same color in our opinion, can we estimate one because of spot need, yes sure. But we haven’t come To this point yet, so I can’t really tell you that this is the case where we can see multiple players on the same field.”

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Speaking on TV after the draft lottery results were announced, Hughes said Canadians will put a lot of emphasis on character. This means we won’t have a PR disaster like last year when the team drafted Logan Maillo.

While Wright is the club’s captain, he may not be the locksmith he was earlier this year. In a quick poll of NHL scouts conducted by TSN’s Bob McKenzie, Wright was the first pick out of six of the nine scouts, while two liked Slovakian right winger Joraj Slavkowski and one chose Logan Colley, who chanced for Hughes’ son Jack in the States United. Team in the IIHF U18 World Championships.

There are concerns about the quality and quantity of players available in this draft. There is no Sidney Crospice, no Conor McDavids, no Austin Matthews. And no player is expected to be as talented of a generation as Conor Bedard, who is the unanimous #1 pick for the 2023 draft.

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Hughes offered her “I think she’s a talented draft.” “It is difficult at any point to compare it to (previous) years’ drafts because these players have 12 months to develop and progress. We are excited to have our first comprehensive selection because we have the opportunity to craft a player who will have an important role in the future of Montreal Canadiens. When and how will that be decided.” .

Hughes and Vice President of Hockey Operations Jeff Gorton will travel to Finland for the World Championships starting Friday. They will then meet with the team’s scouts and begin the process of evaluating players not only to select the best, but for subsequent selections including the first player they got from Calgary, who is likely to be in his mid to late twenties.

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Hughes said he and Gorton will encourage healthy discussion and will rely heavily on scouts who have been following players over the past year and, in some cases, for two and three years.

Canadians hope for a better result than the 2009 draft. That was the last time the draft was held at the Peel Center. They chose local producer Louis Leblanc No. 18 overall and only played 50 matches for the Canadians.

Montreal has picked first place five times in its history: Doug Wickenheiser in 1980, Regian Hall in 1969, Michelle Blass in 1968, Gary Monahan in 1963 and, of course, Jay LaFleur in 1971.

phickey@postmedia.com

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2022-05-11 02:10:40

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