Montreal Canadiens: What Will Habs Lineup Look Like In 2025-26

New Jersey Devils v Montreal Canadiens
New Jersey Devils v Montreal Canadiens / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages
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The Defence

Pair One - Lane Hutson-David Reinbacher

Perhaps the most exciting defence prospect in all of hockey, Hutson has silenced every doubter. He has done everything to prove he is an elite talent, up there with some NCAA defence alumni thriving in the NHL. I expect he will be the Habs' number-one powerplay quarterback, and impact the game much like some of the NHL’s most talented defenseman.

David Reinbacher, while still developing, has shown maturity beyond his 18 years, and looks like one of the top right defence prospects. His size and skill combo, matched up with his mobility and quickness are all NHL translateable traits. I would hold him to the same distinction as David Jiricek, Simon Nemec, with the potential to impact the Canadiens' defence, like Moritz Seider does for the Detroit Red Wings. 

The Canadiens defence is showing signs of being the strength of the entire roster. Jayden Struble’s recent emergence has further solidified the theory. And the Habs may still not have their best defender on the roster, but they haven’t struggled with that at all. With four players under 22 years old, the Habs have a young, but extremely talented group of defensemen. 

Hutson and Reinbacher have not yet arrived, so it’s purely predictions right now. I expect that will all change at the end of this season, or the beginning of the 2024-25 season. Hutson could realistically turn pro at the duration of his sophomore season with Boston University, and Reinbacher will likely play in North America.

Even if Reinbacher plays next season with the Laval Rocket, I think it’s very likely that he will make the jump to the Habs ahead of the 2025 season. Hutson will likely get sheltered minutes to start, perhaps alongside Kovacevic or even Xhekaj to insulate the Habs' prized defender. The two defenders sit atop the Canadiens prospect pipeline and look to be the Habs' go-to duo for many years to come.