8th ranked U24 Habs player - Joshua Roy

Joshua Roy was well on his way to cementing himself as a solid NHL player before an untimely injury cut his end-of-season run short.
Columbus Blue Jackets v Montreal Canadiens
Columbus Blue Jackets v Montreal Canadiens / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages

For the month of May, aside from the NHL Draft lottery, there isn’t much going on. So here at A Winning Habit, I’ve decided to rank the 24 best Canadiens under 24 years old. I opted to rank players that are closest to the NHL, so aside from David Reinbacher, there are no 2023 Draftees. 

So, without further ado, let’s go ahead with the 8th best player, in my opinion, Joshua Roy.

Joshua Roy dominated during his two final seasons of junior hockey in the Quebec Maritime Junior Hockey League after his first two were like a slow burn. After a 44-point and then a 35-point season, Roy seemed destined to be a depth American Hockey League player. The Canadiens took a chance on Roy in the fifth round of the 2021 NHL Draft.

Then Roy exploded for 119 points through 66 games, including 51 goals; putting his potent offensive skills on full display. It appeared that the Canadiens selecting Roy was exactly the wind he needed in his sails. His defensive game also grew along with his interest in playing a 200-foot game, just in time, because he seemed disinterested before his 2021-22 season.

Roy's final season of junior hockey wasn't quite as impressive from an offensive production standpoint; since he mustered up 20 points less. But his smart play in the neutral zone and innate ability to intercept passes and force turnovers added a certain level of maturity to his game. His electric shot and strong passing game - a result of his excellent vision and strong puck skills - were a staple of his game, but adding another layer was what put him over the top.

Upon graduating from junior hockey, Roy adapted well to the professional level and while he took a bit of time to get comfortable, he certainly didn't look out of place. Roy played 41 games with the Laval Rocket and showed a blend of all of his tools, outsmarting opponents in the neutral zone, halting offensive attacks against and looking dominant in the offensive zone. His 32 points weren't mind-boggling, but they were enough to draw Canadiens management's attention.

Roy got called up to Montreal towards the end of the third quarter of the season, playing 23 games before suffering an injury that cut his season short. Roy scored nine points, but he asserted his defensive game, giving the opposition headaches if they didn't take him seriously when pushing towards the offensive zone. Roy seems like a fair bet to crack the Canadiens roster out of training camp.

For that reason he ranks as the eighth-best under 24 player and should he continue his strong play, he will move up the list.