Montreal Canadiens: Kaiden Guhle, Jan Mysak Could Play in AHL This Season

EDMONTON, AB - DECEMBER 29: Kaiden Guhle (Photo by Codie McLachlan/Getty Images)
EDMONTON, AB - DECEMBER 29: Kaiden Guhle (Photo by Codie McLachlan/Getty Images) /

Montreal Canadiens prospects could jump Junior to AHL.

Montreal Canadiens prospects have been scrambling a bit this season to find places to play.

The NHL season wasn’t really ever in doubt, but the details of it were up in the air for a long time. The AHL, on the other hand, was in serious danger of not being able to pull a season together. They announced their plans to play with 28 teams yesterday, and look ready to begin on February 5th. In the meantime, we have seen Jesse Ylonen head back to Finland to play and Josh Brook went all the way to Germany to get some game action in.

The Junior leagues are the ones that having the most trouble. The QMJHL started in September but on several occasions had to shut things down as Covid-19 spread across Quebec. A maritimes division was having some success, but now everything is on hold until the end of the month – at least.

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The OHL and WHL are yet to play a game this season. That happens to be where two of the Habs top draft picks from the 2020 NHL Draft should be plying their trade. Kaiden Guhle was drafted 16th overall in the first round and he would be playing for the Prince Albert Raiders of the WHL. Jan Mysak was drafted in the second round and he was slated to suit up for the Hamilton Bulldogs of the OHL.

However, with the WHL and OHL still not having concrete plans for this season, and Covid-19 not letting up (especially in Ontario and Alberta) we may not see a 2020-21 season in either league.

If not, it would open up an interesting possibility for Guhle and Mysak.

Normally, 18 year old players (and 19 year olds as well) who are drafted out of one of Canada’s Junior leagues are not eligible to play in the AHL. This gives players the option of either making the NHL or staying in Junior until they turn 20.

However, players are allowed to play in the AHL once their Junior season ends. We often see young players get knocked out of the playoffs in Canadian Junior hockey and then immediately jump to the AHL and play a handful of games to close out the season.

If the OHL and WHL are not playing in February, we could see Guhle and Mysak suiting up for the Laval Rocket.

The AHL released a statement last night saying they will be going ahead with a 28 team regular season. The Laval Rocket will play in a Canadian Division with the Belleville Bulls, Manitoba Moose and Toronto Marlies.

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In an odd year, with players left trying to find a place to play, Guhle and Mysak were busy for a few weeks at the World Juniors. It’s quite possible the next time we see them will be with the Laval Rocket.