Northeastern defenseman Jayden Struble will be joining the professional ranks. The 2019 second-round selection will start with the Laval Rocket, with a chance to dress for a depleted Habs roster to end the season. His entry-level contract will carry him through the end of the 2024-25 season.
Standing at 6 feet tall and weighing 195 pounds, Struble will be vying for spots on a very young defensive core, which is particularly stacked with left-handed shooters like Struble. Like Sean Farrell and Lane Hutson, who respectively are at Harvard and Boston University, Struble has been developing in Massachusetts, playing NCAA Div. 1 hockey for the past three seasons.
Although his offensive production over that span has seemingly stagnated, the scouting consensus on Struble maintains that he is a strong and smooth skater whose physicality is noted by everyone in the arena.
Montreal does not lack in young, left-handed defensemen. Kaiden Guhle, Arber Xhekaj, and Jordan Harris have all held down the position admirably throughout the season, and Mike Matheson shows no signs of impending decline at 29. Lane Hutson has been enjoying a historic offensive season at BU. If Struble intends to crack a healthy Canadiens defensive core, he must distinguish himself in Laval and cease whatever opportunity he may get with Harris and Xhekaj injured.
The Canadiens are in the midst of a veritable gauntlet to close out the season and aim to continue upsetting teams Thursday against the Florida Panthers.
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