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Adam Engstrom: a potential first pair in the NHL?
The Canadiens are aiming to build a superb defence for the coming years. The goal? Surround Mike Matheson with several young, dominant players.

On the right side, the pool consists of David Reinbacher, Logan Mailloux and Justin Barron. Add the name of Johnathan Kovacevic if you like, who is an effective bottom line player.

And on the left? The pool is pretty impressive. Guys like Kaiden Guhle, Jordan Harris and Arber Xhekaj, who spent last season in Montreal, are in the mix. Lane Hutson is obviously a big name to remember too.

But they’re not alone. Jayden Struble, Adam Engstrom and Mattias Norlin-oh no, I’m not going to put Norlinnder. It’s not 2021 anymore, after all.

All this to say that Engstrom’s name is often placed in what I’ll call “the second tier” of hopefuls, but that’s not what should be done, basically.

Why not? Because the young man’s potential is very high. As Marc Dumont reports, Engstrom potentially has what it takes to play big minutes in the NHL.

Engstrom scored 16 points in 43 games in Sweden last year when he was in the SHL. That may not sound like much, but for an 18-year-old defenseman in a men’s league, it’s pretty good.

But beyond that, those who saw him play were impressed by the way he handled himself on the ice.

We know that the Habs have a lot of faith in him, and that he’ll be spied on next year in what will likely be his last year in Europe before making the jump to North America.

Instead of being picked among all the defensemen, he’ll get plenty of playing time in Sweden, where his club sees his enormous potential.

According to Dumont, the defenseman has first-pair NHL potential, but his floor is a little lower than the other defensemen in the pool. So it’s either a home run or a strikeout. Imagine if he became a home run…

We’ll be keeping an eye on his progress, since adding him to a good group of youngsters could pay off.

In bursts

– To be continued.

– Interesting.

– Attention all interested parties.

– Alex Galchenyuk: a good employee in the eyes of André Tourigny. [98.5 FM]

– Well done.

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