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Since Jake Allen’s departure, Cayden Primeau is one of the NHL’s elite
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot

For several months, we’ve been talking about the famous three-way battle in front of the Canadiens’ net. Everyone knew it wasn’t an ideal situation, but even so, the three goalies in town had to deal with their teammates in their laps.

Jake Allen, the one who finally quit, found it particularly difficult.

That said, since March 8, the Habs have a fully-fledged goaltending duo again, with Samuel Montembeault and Cayden Primeau sharing the net.

On the one hand, it’s been more difficult for Montembeault since Allen’s departure, as the Quebecer has a 0-2-2 record, a 2.98 goals-against average and a 0.889 save percentage.

On the other hand, Primeau is really taking off: in fact, in three games since March 8, he has a 2-1-0 record, but more importantly, a 2.00 goals-against average and an outstanding 0.943 save percentage.

During this period, that puts him squarely 12th in the league among all goalies, but sixth among goalies who have played at least three games.

(Credit: Screenshot/

Of course, the sample is small. That said, when we look at the other goaltenders at the top of this ranking, only Frederik Andersen saw more shots directed his way among goaltenders with a better efficiency rate.

We’re not talking about a #1 goaltender’s load, but when his number is called, Primeau responds. He got off to a rocky start against the Flames, but more importantly had two excellent starts against the Blue Jackets and the Kraken.

Remember that not so long ago, Primeau was a top prospect in front of the Habs’ net. It took him a while to get there, but at 24, he’s finally playing like a guy who’s worthy of playing in the NHL.

24 is also the age Samuel Montembeault was when he arrived in Montreal. Circumstances were different, but Montembeault has only improved since then, and it’s safe to assume that Primeau could follow a similar trajectory.

The question now will be to see how Primeau fares over the next few weeks, but above all, it will be to see what he can do next year, when he will have a full season as the team’s #2 goaltender.

It may still be too early to talk about a long-term battle for the #1 goaltender’s job… but Primeau is proving that he shouldn’t be written off too quickly.


– I’d give him the whole of next season in Laval, personally.

– I think Habs fans are mostly happy to see him succeed, even in Colorado.

– Why take responsibility when you can use a scapegoat, after all? That’s sarcasm, of course.

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