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Laurent Dauphin admits leaving the Canadiens in 2022 was a mistake
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After the 2021-2022 season, Laurent Dauphin became a free agent after a few seasons with the Flanelle organization. He was offered a contract with the Canadiens and one with the now-defunct Coyotes. Both deals were similar.

But he chose the Coyotes.

He did so simply because he felt his chances of playing in the NHL were better in sunny Arizona than at the Bell Centre. He ended up playing 21 NHL games that year.

Had he stayed in Montreal, he would probably have had his chance because of the injuries. But he didn’t… and he’s the first to confirm that he didn’t make the right decision.

Easy to say in hindsight, but still.

When I signed, it seemed logical, I thought I’d be 12th or 13th  forward in Arizona, and 14th or 15th in Montreal.

– Laurent Dauphin

In an interview with Éric Martel of La Presse, the Quebec player says he’s happy to return to Laval in 2024-2025 on a one-term AHL contract.

It’s been decided months ago.

Dauphin returns to Quebec knowing full well that his contract does not allow him to recall to the NHL. And while he wouldn’t be opposed to the Habs offering him one down the road, he’s not unhappy about it.

Why? Because he’s at the point where he wants stability.

After the stability of his year in Switzerland in 2023-2024, he’s happy to know that he’ll be in Laval to stay. As far as his family is concerned, it will be easier for him and his girlfriend.

And he’s happy to play a veteran role with the Rocket.

Dauphin, who is a former top pick (39th overall), is aware that he will be asked to guide the young prospects growing up in Laval, and that he will also be asked to support the coach, who will be named… eventually.

The Habs could come out on top if he plays his big brother role and helps the Rocket win.

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