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Nick Suzuki leads the race for Selke at the moment, according to The Athletic

I don’t know if you listened to Kent Hughes’ press briefing, where he spoke to the media about a few topical Canadien issues. Among them? The deadline plan.

But we know that the Habs, beyond the deadline, will need to add some long-term offense.

And the GM knows this. He’s aware that, one day, they’ll have to add attack through the surplus of defensemen in town. If the right offer is on the table, he’s comfortable doing it.

The GM has made it clear that he wants to add talent to the attack. No surprise there.

That said, when asked about the fact that the Habs haven’t had a point-per-game guy since Alex Kovalev, the GM didn’t seem to make it a priority. And that’s despite the fact that every other team (except Vegas and Seattle) has had at least one since the Kovalev era in Montreal.

Worse: the GM avoided the question.

After mentioning that point-per-game seemed important in the city, he said it wasn’t the only way to analyze a player’s level of production.

Quickly, he started talking about the fact that there are guys like Patrice Bergeron (his former client) who are good on 200 feet and don’t need to get a point every night to have an impact.

In his eyes, Bergeron is a hall of famer and he made others better.

Of course, no one doubts that. But the problem is that David Pastrnak can produce with anyone… and Patrice Bergeron isn’t to be found on every street corner. Not every team has a Bergeron and/or a Pastrnak.

In fact, the problem is this: why is Hughes afraid to say that having a PPG guy would be a good thing? That’s what got so many people upset on Twitter… and rightly so.

Obviously, when we talk about a player in this mold, Nick Suzuki comes to mind. He’s on track to win defensive forward of the year (a trophy that Patrice Bergeron has often won) and he hasn’t scored a point per game since arriving in Montreal.

Nevertheless, Kent Hughes took the time at the start of the press conference to praise Suzuki’s 200-foot qualities since the start of the season.

Nobody in Montreal is really disappointed to have Suzuki, we agree. But we also agree that Suzuki can’t be alone in the world, and that we need guys with a point per game in the future.

Cole Caufield, Juraj Slafkovsky and Kirby Dach (who has two points in two games this season) are candidates… if all goes well. But will all go well? Not necessarily, no.

When Kent Hughes was hired in 2022, he said he wanted a fast, talented team. There’s talent in Montreal, we agree, but no Alex Kovalev like in the old days, let’s say. It will be up to him to use his defensive depth to get even more top-end talent.

Finally, I think the GM agrees with these comments, but is playing the game of managing public expectations. But that’s just my theory…

In gossip

– Jonathan Drouin had dinner with former teammates last night.

– Interesting.

– Wow!

– To be continued.

– News from CF Montreal.

– Montreal booing its opponents: the talk of the town.

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