Skip to content
Mathias Brunet: A first-round pick for Xhekaj, eyes closed
The talk of the town at the moment is Arber Xhekaj.

The defenseman was demoted to the Rocket and last night played his first career AHL game. Our colleague Charles-Alexis was at Place Bell for the game against the Belleville Senators… And he thought Xhekaj didn’t look like a guy who wanted to play in Laval.

In other words, Xhekaj didn’t play up to expectations.

It was his first game since his injury, but he still played poorly. He should have been dominant because of his experience in the National League, and that wasn’t the case.

But even though the man nicknamed “WiFi” now wears the colors of the Rocket, that doesn’t mean his value has diminished.

In fact, that’s the opinion Mathias Brunet shared with Retour des Sportifs (BPM Sports ):

The Habs can get a first-round pick for Xhekaj with their eyes closed. And that’s for sure. – Mathias Brunet

The journalist maintains that teams will be ready to give up a first-round pick because Xhekaj is the NHL’s best brawler:

Mathias Brunet looks really, really sure of his shot.

He even asked Martin Lemay to quote him, so confident is he about what he’s reporting.

But right now, Arber Xhekaj isn’t performing like the Arber Xhekaj we know. He’s been denatured and seems to have lost all his confidence.

If he’d been that good and that important to Martin St-Louis’ line-up, the Habs wouldn’t have sent him to the AHL to learn defensive skills. And that’s the problem with Xhekaj.

He may be willing to throw down the gloves to defend his teammates, but it’s his decision-making that has hurt the CH at the start of the season. He takes penalties at the wrong time, and on the ice, his play is inconsistent.

The congestion at the Habs’ blue line doesn’t help, we agree. And it must be hard right now, watching Jayden Struble shine in the National League in his place.

But it’s up to him to prove to Kent Hughes, Jeff Gorton and Martin St-Louis that he’s a National League player.

After all, he’s responsible for his own future.

In gusto

– He’s not lucky.


– It’s better to laugh than cry.

– I like his mindset.

– It’s so ugly.

More Content