Montreal Canadiens: What to look forward to in August

MONTREAL, QC - FEBRUARY 24: Max Pacioretty
MONTREAL, QC - FEBRUARY 24: Max Pacioretty /

Things with the Montreal Canadiens and the rest of the NHL will be picking up in a month, but August may have some interesting items with it as well.

Welcome to August Montreal Canadiens fans, the official start of the ‘Dog Days of the Summer.’ June had the draft, July had Free Agent Frenzy, but there’s nothing too major that will be going on within the realm of the NHL for another 30 or so days. September seems far enough, but there may be things to take place that can keep us at bay until then.

For starters, the World Junior Summer Showcase is still taking place. The event will be taking a quick break before it transitions to the round robin stage between a combined Teams Canada and USA as well as Teams Finland and Sweden. Both Jacob Oloffson and Cayden Primeau have made their mark for their respective nations already. Oloffson, in fact, opened the scoring in Tuesday’s game against Finland.

There’s been an update on Ryan Poehling’s status who is recovering from surgery for tonsillitis. According to Mike G. Morreale, the Habs 2017 first-round pick also had a procedure to repair a deviated septum (bone and cartilage in the nose) and won’t be playing any games this week for Team USA. Poehling has been able to practice, however, saying:

"I won’t play in any games; I’m just here to practice and be with the guys because that’s the biggest thing at the summer camp. You want to get to know everyone, create bonds that you can carry over into December."

The tournament is set to conclude this Saturday (August 4th), but Jesperi Kotkaniemi may play some games this week as well. Assat head coach has Kotkaniemi playing in some preseason games for the team that start this Friday, August 3rd and stretches until August 14th. Add on the chance of the young centre playing for the Montreal Canadiens as well as main camp, and the next few weeks are going to be jammed packed.

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In the junior realm of the hockey world, camps should be starting fairly soon. The QMJHL’s preseason begins on August 19th while the OHL and WHL don’t get going until the end of the month. It will be a good opportunity to see some of the Habs 2018 Draft Class including Cam Hillis, Allan McShane, and Samuel Houde.

Another thing that comes in August are the PTO signings. The Montreal Canadiens got that started with Simon Despres. There are still some available players without contracts, and it will be interesting to see if Marc Bergevin gives any of them a tryout for training camp. That doesn’t guarantee that any get a contract, but it couldn’t hurt having an extra veteran in the room for a bit.

Speaking of contracts, Michael McCarron and Kerby Rychel are still unsigned. Neither can report to training camp without a deal so that will have to be resolved relatively soon.

The chances are slim, but the future of Max Pacioretty may be dealt with as well. It’s no secret that the Montreal Canadiens are trying to trade the 29-year-old and different things have gotten in their way to that goal. It’s starting to look more likely that Pacioretty is at Habs camp in September as trades rarely occur in August and the organization will have to handle the attention towards it accordingly.

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The final countdown begins today, but the regular season is closer than it’s ever been.