We’ve very rarely seen such big players in the NHL at this age → https://t.co/VA5mve1Vms
– DansLesCoulisses (@DLCoulisses) July 27, 2023
Last year, the Canadiens decided to play Juraj Slafkovský in the NHL at the age of 18. It was a bold gamble, considering that guys his size don’t usually play in the NHL, but at least it gave him a taste of the world’s best field hockey league.
In terms of production, it hasn’t necessarily been easy, as the Slovakian has scored just four goals and 10 points in 39 games. And while he had his moments during the season, he still showed some interesting flashes.
And at the CH, we feel that this has helped him progress. Martin St-Louis recently said that he liked the youngster’s improvement over the course of the season and that, had it not been for his injury, production would probably have come later in the campaign.
And according to Arpon Basu, we can’t rule out the possibility of seeing him score 20 goals and 40 points this season.
Canadiens mailbag part one, on expectations for Slaf, managing the prospect pool and more. Part two comes out later this week. https://t.co/zAR7EHMd8i
– Arpon Basu (@ArponBasu) July 31, 2023
I must confess that I personally have my doubts as to whether he’ll be as productive this season. There are already quite a few forwards in town, and barring a surprise, I don’t see him playing in the top-6 on a regular basis for a good part of the season.
It’s easier to score when you’re playing with Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield than with Christian Dvorak and Joel Armia, for example. And I think for a good part of the season, we’ll see Slafkovský playing with depth guys.
On the other hand, if Slaf has really progressed lately, he could eventually force his coach’s hand. Dislodging guys like Suzuki, Caufield, Dach, Newhook, Anderson and Monahan from the top-6 won’t necessarily be easy, but if an injury strikes and the youngster impresses, he could earn himself a nice audition.
I think he’ll need a little more time before he’s scoring that many points, but I agree with Basu that we should see some progression from the young forward.
He’ll be back in Montreal this week to continue his preparation.
– Luc Gelinas (@LucGelinasRDS) July 31, 2023
We’ll see what the Slovakian can offer this season, but even if he doesn’t score 20 goals or 40 points, there are ways for him to take his game to another level. And clearly, his preparation and the confidence of his coaches suggest it’s more than possible.
– We wish them the best.
– theScore NHL (@theScoreNHL) August 1, 2023
– Hard blow for the Jays.
The club already had interest in Tim Anderson recently.
The White Sox are going to get a call. https://t.co/lLc4dSoket
– Passion MLB (@passion_mlb) August 1, 2023
– That’s right.