Canadiens: 5 Things to Watch For in the Second Half of the Season

Colorado Avalanche v Montreal Canadiens
Colorado Avalanche v Montreal Canadiens / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages
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Regulation Wins

I’ve harped on the Canadiens and their struggles with playing with a lead this season. As it stands right now, just half of Montreal’s wins have come in regulation. No team is more familiar with overtime than the Canadiens, and more often than not, they held leads in those games. It’s a sticking point of mine that I’d like to see them improve upon. Their 4-3 win over Colorado is a great start.

With still so much hockey left, we’re going to see if this is something the Canadiens can get better at over the course of the year. Playing with a lead in the NHL isn’t easy, and the Habs are a young, rebuilding squad, so you don’t want to harp on them too much. But you have to be able to close games out in the NHL if you want to be successful.

Come playoff time, there is no three-on-three overtime or shootouts. So, the Habs have to get comfortable playing at five-on-five, and they have to be able to protect a lead. I’m fairly confident they can figure it out, but it may take time. We’ll see if they can take steps in the right direction the rest of the year.