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“We may be starting to understand why Cole Caufield fell out of the draft.”
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot
Since Cole Caufield arrived in the NHL, he has made his mark as a goal scorer. We saw him dominate at this level during his development, and even in his debut on the Bettman circuit, it was by repeatedly finding the back of the net that he established himself as a Montreal crowd favorite.

It only took a few weeks for the Goal Caufield nickname to spread, after all.

That said, this season has been more difficult for Caufield in terms of goals. In fact, he’s scored just two goals since the start of February, and while the points are there, the scoring touch seems to have disappeared.

And with rumors circulating that he’s at the party quite often, it’s not helping.

Last night, in his column on the TVA Sports website, JiC went back over the young maverick’s case a little… and ended his piece with a pretty strong sentence:

I’m thinking that this later-than-anticipated selection in his case is perhaps gradually being justified before our very eyes… – Jean-Charles Lajoie

Lajoie isn’t ready to say he’s necessarily worried about young #22, but he says he’s “puzzled” a bit, not quite understanding where the sense of urgency that once inhabited Caufield has gone. He’d like to see him get more quality scoring chances, another aspect of his game that seems to have disappeared.

He’s not taking anything away from Caufield’s natural talent, but he wants to see him give more of it, concretely.

To be honest, I still have the impression that we’ll eventually see Caufield score a few more goals next year. I’ve always been inclined to think that his current season would be a little more difficult in terms of goals scored because of his shoulder operation last year (he may have recovered physically, but it can take a full season to get back to full fitness psychologically after such an injury), and he’s still capable of contributing in other ways, but it’s true that eventually, the goals will have to come back.

He’s still an excellent pick at #15 (drafting a first-trio winger at that rank is exceptional)… but JiC isn’t completely wrong that we’re starting to see the weak points in Caufield’s game.

In bursts

– Despite falling in morning practice, Ilya Samsonov will be able to play tonight.

– The Panthers get two big pieces of their roster back.

– Great read.

– Still.

– Too bad.

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