Skip to content
Rocket: half the club will be made up of youngsters aged 22 and under
In recent weeks, the Rocket has let go of veterans (like Alex Belzile and Anthony Richard) and replaced them with youngsters. With so many youngsters on the rise, we need to make room for them.

In reality, the last few weeks have been a challenge to manage the extent to which you need to keep veterans (like captain Gabriel Bourque, for example) to surround the youngsters… without blocking them.

It’s a good challenge. But why?

Because, as Arpon Basu mentioned this morning in a piece on The Athletic, the AHL is a tough league and simply throwing youngsters at the problem wouldn’t be the answer.

And management knows it.

That’s why Rob Ramage, Francis Bouillon, Adam Nicholas and a host of other interesting people will be heading to Laval to work with the youngsters. They’ll be taking a load of leadership on their shoulders.

But will it be enough?

After all, as Arpon Basu mentioned, the Rocket is set to start next season with no fewer than 12 youngsters aged 22 and under. And that’s not counting David Reinbacher, whose fate has yet to be decided, and the three 23- and 24-year-olds.

  • 19 years old: Filip Mesar
  • 20 years: Riley Kidney, Logan Mailloux, Joshua Roy and William Trudeau
  • 21 years: Jan Mysak, Jared Davidson and Emil Heineman
  • 22 years: Xavier Simoneau, Jakub Dobes, Jayden Struble and Sean Farrell

These aren’t guys brimming with pro experience, which will give Jean-François Houle a good challenge on some nights.

He will, however, have one of the most important mandates in the organization: guiding the youngsters.

And what we mustn’t forget is that these are quality players. Many of them are youngsters who were drafted in the first two rounds of the amateur draft.

The last time the Rocket had this many youngsters was in 2018-2019. Of the lot, there were no prospects drafted in the first two rounds, and only two of them are still in Montreal.

  • Jake Evans
  • Michael Pezzetta

Back then, prospect development didn’t work the same way. Now, it’s at the heart of the plan, and the prospects are quality guys who will truly aspire to break into the NHL and make an impact.

Even if they have to be patient.

What this basically means is that there will indeed be youngsters, that they’ll be surrounded by the organization, but that on the ice, they’ll have to do the heavy lifting. And since things are jammed upstairs, there will be limited places for call-ups.

Development has never been so important in the city, and the 2023-2024 Rocket is proof of that.

Breaking news

– News from CF Montreal.

– Official.

– Read more.

– The action resumes tonight in the MLB.

More Content