May 25, 2014; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) battles for the puck with Montreal Canadiens defenseman Alexei Emelin (74) during the third period in game four of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Poll: Who Plays Behind P.K. Subban On Montreal Canadiens Blue Line?

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We have finished voting on who will be the twelve forwards to suit up for the Montreal Canadiens on opening night, and after giving P.K. Subban the top defence pairing on the right side, we smartly voted Andrei Markov to be his partner when the puck finally drops on October 8th.

Our lineup currently looks like this:

Pacioretty – Desharnais – Parenteau

Galchenyuk – Plekanec – Gallagher

Bourque – Eller – Sekac

Prust – Malhotra – Weise

Markov – Subban

******* – *********

******* – *********

We will now take a closer look at who will fill in the bottom four, starting with the right side on the second pairing. There are many options that the Canadiens will tinker with through training camp, but who do you think will ultimately crack the top four?

Feb 2, 2014; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens defenseman Nathan Beaulieu (40) skates with the puck against Winnipeg Jets during the first period at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Tom Gilbert was brought in on July 1st on a very reasonable two year contract that will pay him 2.8 million per season. He is a right handed defender and a solid puck moving option who played on the top pairing in Florida last season with Brian Campbell.

It appears Gilbert was brought in to fill this top four role, but can he take over for Alexei Emelin, and hold youngsters Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu out of the top four?

Emelin played the right side on the second pairing most of last season with fellow Russian Markov on the left side. He struggled at times coming back from knee surgery, and looks to be moving to the left side with the acquisition of Gilbert and retention of Mike Weaver.

However, if Tinordi or Beaulieu impresss enough in training camp, could the Habs move Emelin back to the right side to make room for one of the former first round picks in the top four?

Maybe one of those rookies will earn top four ice time right away, but be moved to the right side to get it. Both have been used on both sides of the ice in their brief NHL appearances over the past two seasons.

Can either Beaulieu or Tinordi bump newly signed Gilbert to the third pairing out of training camp next season?

Who Will Be The Montreal Canadiens Second-Pairing Right Defenseman Next Season?

  • Tom Gilbert (58%, 136 Votes)
  • Alexei Emelin (21%, 50 Votes)
  • Nathan Beaulieu (15%, 35 Votes)
  • Jarred Tinordi (6%, 12 Votes)

Total Voters: 233

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Tags: Alexei Emelin Jarred Tinordi Montreal Canadiens Nathan Beaulieu Tom Gilbert

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