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Juraj Slafkovsky clearly deserves more overtime opportunities
Last night at the Bell Centre between the Montreal Canadiens and the New York Rangers was truly a game of hockey.

The Habs’ 4-3 shootout victory was clearly one of the best games, if not the best game, to watch for the Tricolore this season.

In addition to Samuel Montembeault and his incredible performance in front of the net, another player caught my attention throughout the game, even though he didn’t get a point.

I’m referring to Juraj Slafkovsky.

The Habs’ Slovak winger had another very strong game, managing to stand out in virtually every one of his appearances.

As we all know, since Slaf has been on the first line, he’s been gaining in confidence and playing some great hockey, which gives Habs fans hope for the future of his development.

Not only does he complement the Tricolore’s two best forwards, Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield, but more often than not, he leads the charge for the trio and creates scoring opportunities.

Slafkovsky is more than a simple addition to the first trio.

Over time, he has become a key player in the trio’s success.

The 19-year-old Slovakian is making great strides at the moment, and it shows with every game, as he gains in confidence and tries more and more out-of-the-ordinary plays, something he wasn’t doing before.

Here are his best moments with the puck in the game.

What’s also important to note about Slaf’s game is that he’s excelling more and more without the puck.

Indeed, as Grant McCagg explains, Slafkovsky gets involved effectively when he doesn’t have the puck, and this makes him a reliable player in both directions of the rink.

In short, Slafkovsky is improving in every aspect of his game, and it shows.

Martin St-Louis trusts him and gives him much more ice time than before.

The only criticism of St-Louis’ use of Slaf is the Slovak’s ice time in overtime.

In a game where Slafkovsky was once again very good, he clearly deserved more opportunities in the overtime period, especially considering the injured key players who aren’t here and would clearly play in overtime (Kirby Dach and Alex Newhook).

In a rebuilding season, it’s time to test Slaf in every chair, and one of his chances has to be overtime.

Slafkovsky was only sent into the fray when there was less than a minute left in overtime.

Despite this, he managed to make his mark in just 20 seconds.

With such a small presence, Slaf managed to harm Alexis Lafrenière in his feint when he was alone in front of Montembeault, and he managed to get the puck away from K’Andre Miller thanks to excellent pressure, which even led to a penalty.

Unfortunately, there were only 11 seconds left in overtime, so the Habs didn’t really have time to take advantage of this power play, but if the Tricolore had to score on this power play, all credit would have gone to Slafkovsky.

In short, it’s now clear that for the next few times the Habs find themselves in overtime, Slafkovsky clearly deserves to jump on the ice more than once, and before the last minute.

He showed enough in just 20 seconds.

Seriously, who wouldn’t jump with excitement among Habs fans to see Juraj Slafkovsky score the winning goal in overtime?

In a gust

– Happy birthday to Chris Wideman, who is still a Montreal Canadiens player. He’s blowing out 34 candles today.

– The Rocket will be in action this afternoon.

– Habs alumnus Denis Gurianov was back in the NHL last night, as he took on his former team, the Dallas Stars.

– Still, there’s nothing to complain about.

– She does it again.

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