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Montreal Canadiens: Young prospects target of unjustified comparisons

It’s a perilous exercise, and even though everyone knows it’s dangerous to make comparisons, we all like to have this kind of information. I’m the first to do it, and I love to see it. So I can’t say you’re wrong, I’m just as guilty as you are.

My rational side tells me that I shouldn’t attach any importance to this kind of exercise, but I can’t help it. Even NHL teams, when interviewing available draft prospects, make it a point to ask them what kind of player they’re comparing themselves to. If it’s good enough for professional scouts, why not for me?

But I know that everyone makes mistakes in the end. It’s like the mock draft exercise. I like reading about it, but I know that everyone makes mistakes all the time.

So when I saw a post by a certain Habs Burner on Twitter, I thought I’d share it with you, even though it doesn’t really mean much in the end and the person behind the account has no real expertise. Habs Burner isn’t a Pierre LeBrun or a Kevin Weekes and he has no inside information. He just finds the exercise interesting, even if it comes from an illustrious stranger.

I don’t know if this list is the source of the discussion I’m about to tell you about, but let’s just say the timing is really good.

In a tweet, the director of scouting for the Dobber Prospect site, Hadi Kalakeche went with a pretty direct response to all those who compare David Reinbacher to Moritz Seider.

In another tweet, he specifies that he likes Reinbacher and believes he will be a very good defender. It’s just that making this kind of comparison isn’t realistic or fair to the Canadiens’ new prospect. He even goes so far as to say that a fairer comparable, in his opinion, would be Chris Tanev with a better skating stroke.

For his part, former Habs content creator Marc Dumont simply states that comparisons suck… to put it politely.

The best response, in my opinion, and one that perfectly matches my vision of the exercise, came from Pascal Lapointe of

It’s nuanced and a good reflection of what we should be trying to find in a fair and equitable comparison for the hopefuls.

Getting back to the comparables Habs Burner mentioned, I think the comparisons between Joshua Roy and Ondrej Palat and between Owen Beck and Phillip Danault are pretty fair. As for the others, I have major reservations. For example, I don’t see Matthew Tkachuk’s dog at all in Juraj Slafkovsky’s game. Could he develop it, perhaps. But at that point, it’s no longer a comparison we’re making, but magical thinking. It’s not the same thing at all.

In the end, I urge you to always take this kind of exercise with a grain of salt. It’s always better than dreaming that a hopeful from our favorite club could become something he’s not, and ending up disappointed by the gap between our hopes and the reality on the ice.

In a gust

– Speaking of predictions, sometimes it’s best not to revisit them.

– Gabriel Landeskog and Erik Johnson invest in a soccer club in England.

– Ivan Fedotov’s story doesn’t seem to worry the Flyers too much.

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