Montreal Canadiens: Sending Down Corey Schueneman is Right Decision

TAMPA, FL - DECEMBER 28: Corey Schueneman #64 of the Montreal Canadiens (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)
TAMPA, FL - DECEMBER 28: Corey Schueneman #64 of the Montreal Canadiens (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images) /

The Montreal Canadiens, as well as any other team in the National Hockey League, are allowed to carry as many players as they want on their roster after the trade deadline.

Before March 21st, teams had to carry a maximum of 23 players on their active roster. Once that deadline passes, teams still need to be cap compliant, but can carry more than 23 players if they want to do so.

The Canadiens are one of the many teams to have done this over the past few weeks. Though it doesn’t really many a ton of sense.

The Canadiens had nine healthy defensemen on the active roster for the past few weeks. This means three defenders were sitting as healthy scratches every single night. One of them has been William Lagesson who was acquired on deadline day and only played on game. He is a pending UFA who was acquired from the Edmonton Oilers in the Brett Kulak trade to make the salaries and number of contracts balance out.

The other players that have been sitting a lot are Kale Clague and Corey Schueneman. This makes a lot less sense than sitting Lagesson every night since he will be leaving the organization in the offseason anyway.

Schueneman played a big role for the Laval Rocket early in the season. He scored ten points in 27 games for the Rocket before being called up. The 26 year old defender is a smooth skating, offensive minded defender who helps jumpstart the offence on the regular.

The 26 year old is a bit of a late bloomer who didn’t finish his college hockey career until he was 23 years old. He proved this season he is a very effective player at the AHL level and held his won quite well during his 24 NHL games as well.

Though he is a little older than most prospects, Schueneman has only played 135 career pro games and appears to be improving every week. He won’t improve sitting in the press box, so the Canadiens made the right call earlier today when they sent him down to the Laval Rocket.

The Rocket have five games left in their regular season and are all but assured of qualifying for the playoffs for the first time in their existence. The Canadiens AHL teams have not had much playoff success in the past decade, but this year is a chance to make a serious run for the Calder Cup.

Adding Schueneman back onto a blue line that also has Xavier Ouellet, Sami Niku and Louis Belpedio gives the Rocket a terrific top four.

It also gives Schueneman a chance to continue developing and possibly getting him ready to make the Canadiens opening night roster next season.

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