Montreal Canadiens: Paul Byron absent from practice

The Montreal Canadiens were on the ice for practice at PNC Arena ahead of their match against Carolina, and Paul Byron was given a therapy day.

Not surprising to learn that Paul Byron was given the day off from the Montreal Canadiens practice in Carolina today. The 28-year-old took a nasty spill shoulder first into the boards at the end of last night’s game and skated to the locker room afterwards. Claude Julien told media that he would be re-evaluated so we’ll have to wait for the verdict there.

What may be comforting, but a tad optimistic, was that the team said that Byron is taking a therapy day. He may still miss tomorrow’s game against the Hurricanes, but if it’s days to rest opposed to being out, then that’s a fair trade.

Charles Hudon shifted to Byron’s spot at centre in between Max Pacioretty and Daniel Carr while Jacob de La Rose and Byron Froese switch places on the fourth line. It also looks like Joseph Morrow played well enough to get another shot in the lineup over Jordie Benn as there were no changes to the defence pairings.

He had a fine game by his standards and is a better option in terms of mobility. Morrow and Jeff Petry were the only defencemen to see 20+ minutes of playing time last night, so it looks like he earned some trust back from Julien. It could’ve also been because of how poor Karl Alzner was since he usually gets those kinds of minutes.

If that’s the reason, and I think it is, then Julien is staying committed to the accountability train which needs to happen. Whether that changes how the team plays for the rest of the season is another conversation.

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