Canadiens: An In-Depth Look At The Franchise’s Top Five Draft Busts

Montreal Canadiens. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Montreal Canadiens. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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Lindsay Vallis - Bio, pictures, stats and more | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens
Lindsay Vallis - Bio, pictures, stats and more | Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens /

2. Lindsay Vallis

Position: Right Wing

Selected: 13th overall, 1989 NHL Entry Draft

NHL games: 1 (0-0-0 totals)

Finally, we get to one of the more familiar (I guess?) draft busts in Canadiens history, Lindsay Vallis, the 13th overall pick in the 1989 draft who played in just 1 NHL game, in the 1993-94 season. A talented offensive, playmaking winger out of the WHL’s Thunderbirds (briefly playing alongside Bilodeau) the Habs seemingly couldn’t get enough of Seattle’s talent, also taking top scorer Turner Stevenson 12th overall the next year (who was a productive bottom six forward in the NHL for years, though not offensively). While he had shown tremendous potential in junior, record 70+ points in three of his four seasons, Vallis never became anything of note in the NHL and fizzled out quickly.

After playing in seven playoff games with AHL Fredericton in 1990-91, Vallis became a regular bottom-six contributor for the team, though he didn’t see any NHL ice even in Montreal’s Stanley Cup Championship 1992-93 season. Ultimately, Montreal gave Vallis a one-game audition in 1993-94 as they realized his stock was fading and cut ties with him in the offseason. After that, Vallis, like Bilodeau and many others, bounced around the minor leagues, spending time in the AHL, WCHL, and UHL. After struggling in a bottom six role with the Worcester IceCats for two seasons, Vallis found his scoring touch in the lower-level leagues, becoming a star for the Bakersfield Fog and Asheville Smoke. Recording two seasons with 90+ points, including highs of 27-73-100 totals over 66 games in the 1998-99 season (earning his last AHL callup) Vallis retired after the 1999-00 season, briefly serving as a Player-Assistant coach with the Fog in 1997-98.

Again, Vallis’ career in hindsight was a major disappoint. He only found his scoring touch in lower-level leagues and never did enough to earn a real chance with the Canadiens. Even after swapping first rounders with the New York Rangers (along with enforcer Chris Nilan) in January of 1988, neither team ended up the victor, with New York selecting inconsistent NHL forward Steven Rice 20th. Not to mention the fact that Adam Foote was selected after (though the Habs did snag Patrice Brisebois 31st). Ultimately though, as specific as this is, Vallis was a top scorer somewhere, and was briefly an AHL regular, albeit in a minor role (as compared to the player coming up). As such, he earns number two on this list.