Montreal Canadiens: Early 2024 OHL Prospect's Update

Saginaw Spirit v Ottawa 67's
Saginaw Spirit v Ottawa 67's / Chris Tanouye/GettyImages
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Early 2024 Updates

Filip Mesar
2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages

Mesar

Money Mesar has 12 points in his last 10 games, but just two of those have came in his last five.

Still, he has been on fire with Kitchener and the 2022 26th overall selection is looking like a nice top-nine option for the Habs.

Of course, we would all love to see a bigger jump in his production, but there is no question that he will be a nice piece in Laval or Montreal next year.

Beck

Beck has been one of the top defensive forwards in the OHL since he first set foot in the league. Behind Nick Suzuki and Kirby Dach, the third-line centre spot appears to be a good fit for him.

Beck's increased shooting has been a positive, especially for a team that is lacking in the goals department. And as the third-line pivot, Beck will not be leaned on for goal-scoring, but as a complimentary piece.

Sobolev

I slotted Sobolev third on the list, and the reason for that is so that the readership stays intrigued. It is meant as no slight at Sobolev, but he isn't as likely to see much time in the NHL, not for the foreseeable future anyway. The 6-foot and 210-pound defender has 1-3-4 totals in his last five games.

I do think that he could become a nice stabilizing piece for the Rocket blueline. In the mould of a Shea Weber - eating up minutes, demolishing opponents on the boards and hammering slapshots at opposing goaltenders - obviously, he is no Weber. But he has the tools to be a reliable defender, who can shut down the opposition.

Xhekaj

Xhekaj appears to be evolving as a player right in front of us - become more of an offensive play driver and shooter. The physical stuff hasn't gone away, but been used for good, especially when shielding the puck from defenders and rushing the net.

Xhekaj has shown tremendous growth in his offensive game; he has already outpaced his totals from 2022-23 (13-12-25 in 68 games), with a 23-19-42 stat line in 20 fewer games. There was a bit of risk with the selection, but Xhekaj has answered any questions that lingered, emphatically.

The boys in the OHL are coming along nicely, and it's hard to imagine that Canadiens camp in October won't be one of the more competitive ones in some time.

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