Montreal Canadiens: Watch Jan Mysak Send Hamilton Bulldogs to Memorial Cup Final

OSHAWA, ONTARIO - OCTOBER 08: Jan Mysak (Photo by Chris Tanouye/Getty Images)
OSHAWA, ONTARIO - OCTOBER 08: Jan Mysak (Photo by Chris Tanouye/Getty Images) /

The Montreal Canadiens had three prospects participating in this year’s Memorial Cup. Though it got off to a bit of a rough start for all of them, two of those Habs prospects just punched their ticket to the final.

The Memorial Cup tournament sends champions from the WHL, OHL and QMJHL to a fourth, host cities arena to compete for Canadian Junior hockey supremacy. This year’s event features the Shawinigan Cataractes, Edmonton Oil Kings, Saint John Sea Dogs and Hamilton Bulldogs.

The Sea Dogs, who lost in the first round of the QMJHL postseason, finished first in the round robin portion and headed straight to the final as the number one seed. The Bulldogs, with Habs prospects Jan Mysak and Arber Xhekaj had to beat the Oil Kings and Habs first round pick Kaiden Guhle in the last round robin game to keep their season alive.

That win put them into the semi-final tonight against the Cataractes. It was another back and forth game as many of them have been at the tournament. Four terrific, and evenly matched teams keep playing close games that are not settled until the final siren.

In this contest, it was Mysak who settled things with a nice tip in front to score the overtime winner. Nathan Staios, a defenceman for the Bulldogs had the puck on his stick for seemingly three minutes. He circled around the Cataractes zone twice before circling back and firing a shot towards the net.

Mysak was positioned in front and got a stick on the puck to redirect it into the Cataractes net to end their season and keep the Bulldogs alive. He battled for that space in front while Staios ran a few laps around the offensive zone and it paid off in the biggest way.

The Canadiens second round pick from the 2020 NHL Draft has been playing a third line centre role and hadn’t had a point in the Memorial Cup until the big overtime winner. He has been playing well, getting chances and taking on an important defensive role, while taking key draws and shutting things down defensively.

But, he did have a solid regular season with 34 goals and 64 points in 61 games, so a little more was expected. Well, he just saved it for the biggest moment of the tournament.

For his part, Xhekaj has been productive at the Memorial Cup. He plays a ton of minutes at all strengths and has four assists in four games to lead all defensemen in scoring at the Memorial Cup.

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