Is it possible Pierre Gauthier has had this up his sleeve for awhile now and is ready to introduce the Montreal Canadiens’ secret weapon? Maybe we don’t need a high-priced free agent like Ilya Kovalchuk and the likes rolling into town and eating up crucial cap dollars.
Maybe Alexander Avtsin will put great big smiles on our faces.
Avtsin, property of the Habs, is 19 years old, a real nice 6’3, 198 lbs, and has been patrolling right wing for Dynamo Moscow of the KHL lately. The young fellow, (and this already puts a smile on my face) has broken his contract with Dynamo because he feels he can win a spot with the Habs this year, so he’ll be lacing up his skates in Montreal (Brossard) on Tuesday during the development camp.
There’s nothing like a big, strong, talented rookie surprising everyone, making the team, and raising eyebrows in the hockey world. It’s the stuff of legends. It’s what Scott Young used to write about in his kids hockey books, except for the part about Russian players.
Let’s hope Avtsin dazzles at Brossard and the team has no choice but to give him a spot on the big club. Henri Richard wasn’t supposed to make the club either in 1955 and was pencilled in to a minor league slot. Except during training camp no one could get the puck off him and he showed he was tough as nails against bigger guys, so he left the team no choice but to sign him and the rest is history. (Of course I’m not comparing Avtsin to the great Pocket Rocket. Only the possible surprise at camp).
Avtsin might be so sensational between Tuesday and October 7th that he’ll also leave the team with no choice, just like the Pocket Rocket did so many years ago.
Something to hope for in Habs universe.