The Montreal Canadiens are going to once again take part in an annual rookie showcase tournament in the fall. For many years they did take part in a rookie tournament, giving their youngest players a chance to show what they have in actual game action.
It gave all their prospects a chance to play actual games against prospects from other teams instead of just practicing and doing off-ice activities and on-ice drills and scrimmages with their own teammates.
The tournament hasn’t been held for years, due to Covid, but the Canadiens will participate once again on the eve of training camp. The team announced its dates for rookie camp and the days of their games earlier today.
The tournament will be held in Buffalo, with the Canadiens joining the Buffalo Sabres, Ottawa Senators, New Jersey Devils, and Pittsburgh Penguins. Each team will play three games in the tournament but there is no semifinal or final round.
The Habs rookie camp will begin on September 14th in Brossard at the Bell Sports Complex before they head to Buffalo for the showcase event. The Canadiens will face the Buffalo Sabres rookies on Thursday, September 15th, the New Jersey Devils rookies on Friday, September 16th and the rookies for the Ottawa Senators on the afternoon of Sunday, September 18th.
Prospects who are playing college hockey are ineligible to attend, so that means Luke Tuch, Blake Biondi, and Lane Hutson will not be in attendance. But it will be the first chance to get a look at players like Juraj Slafkovsky, Filip Mesar, Owen Beck, Vinzenz Rohrer and other 2022 NHL Draft picks.
The rookie camp is just before the team’s main training camp and is where Arber Xhekaj really made a name for himself last year. He was invited to the rookie camp, then the Habs training camp and then signed to an entry-level deal. It will be interesting to see which prospects get invited to this year’s rookie camp.
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