Montreal Canadiens: Five Former Habs Who Looked Odd In New Colors

TORONTO, ON - JANUARY 28: Guy Lafleur #10 of the New York Rangers skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during NHL game action on January 28, 1989 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Toronto tied New York 1-1. (Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JANUARY 28: Guy Lafleur #10 of the New York Rangers skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during NHL game action on January 28, 1989 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Toronto tied New York 1-1. (Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images) /
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CALGARY, AB – MARCH 26: Saku Koivu #11 (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)
CALGARY, AB – MARCH 26: Saku Koivu #11 (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images) /

2. Saku Koivu

Saku Koivu did not climb the Montreal Canadiens all-time lists like Patrick Roy and Larry Robinson. Still, he put up strong numbers over a long career with the Habs, but his strongest impact came from things that he overcome and accomplished off the ice.

Koivu was drafted in the first round of the 1993 NHL Draft, just weeks after the Canadiens won their most recent Stanley Cup. He showed tremendous promise early in his career but most of his production early on was derailed by injuries.

The Finnish center scored 20 goals and 45 points as a rookie in 1995-96 after playing a few more seasons in Finland before making the move to Montreal. Koivu was terrific in his sophomore season, scoring 56 points in 50 games, on pace to finish top ten in league scoring, but injuries cut his season short.

After playing all 82 games as a rookie, Koivu would not play more than 69 until the 2002-03 season. Of course, this was the first year he was back after defeating cancer during the 2001-02 season and returning with three games left in the regular season. He would score ten points in 12 playoff games, helping lead the Habs to an upset victory over the Boston Bruins in round one.

Koivu set career highs with 22 goals and 75 points in 2006-07. He was always at his best in the playoffs, scoring 48 points in 54 postseason games with the Habs. He was the captain of the team during its centennial season in 2008-09 and it came as quite a shock when he signed with the Anaheim Ducks following that season.

Koivu played five seasons in California, but just never looked right in a Ducks sweater. He was such an inspirational leader during his time in Montreal it felt like he would never leave. Even after he played five years elsewhere, it still fells strange when you see a picture of him in a Ducks sweater and are reminded he did go on to play somewhere other than Montreal.