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Filip Mesar hopes for a chance to play with the Canadiens this season
Next year, the plan for Filip Mesar is to see him perform with the Laval Rocket.

And unlike last year, he’ll get a lot more playing time this season under Jean-François Houle, especially with such a dynamic lineup.

It was the CH’s plan from the start.

His junior career, where he didn’t do badly under the circumstances, will only last one season in the end. But that’s okay. The Slovak is feeling good, and his goal is to spend the entire 2023-2024 season with the Canadiens’ training club.

He still hopes to get a few opportunities to play with the big club.

With the big club, there are fewer places to play up front. But if the Tricolore is still unlucky with injuries, maybe he could get his chance. I say “maybe”, but deep down, I don’t think Mesar is plan A, or plan B, or even plan C, in the event of injuries.

Guys like Riley Kidney, Joshua Roy and Sean Farell would go before him, in my opinion. Why? Because in Farrell’s case, he’s already had a taste of the NHL. And in the case of the other two, they’ve had a lot of success at the junior level in recent seasons.

Not that Mesar hasn’t, but he’s younger and, while he hasn’t been disappointing, he hasn’t burnt up his league. He collected 51 points in 52 games last season. That’s not bad, of course, but it’s not the kind of production you’d expect from a first-round draft pick.

One thing’s for sure: his place in Laval for a full year is almost assured. I believe that the AHL is now the best league for his development, because in Slovakia, he played with players older than him. He’ll do the same in a very competitive league and, above all, with a competitive club.

Mesar is still a great prospect for the team, and I’m sure management (and Jean-François Houle) have a clear plan for him.

In gossip

– Clearly not the guy in the picture on the front page.

– Attention all interested parties.

– Yes, it feels good.

– Gone so young…

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