Ryan O’Reilly Compliments Nick Suzuki Ahead Of Predators-Canadiens Matchup

O'Reilly enjoys watching Nick Suzuki's smart two-way play.
Ottawa Senators v Nashville Predators
Ottawa Senators v Nashville Predators / Donald Page/GettyImages

If you ask any Montreal Canadiens fan they know exactly how lucky the organization is to have Nick Suzuki.

Given his captaincy, it’s clear management shares the same sentiment towards Suzuki. For the last three seasons, Suzuki has been nothing short of brilliant, all things considered. He has been one of the leaders in ice time, and a staple on the penalty kill and powerplay. 

But this year, his point production is on par for the best of his career. Ahead of the matchup against the Florida Panthers, Panthers head coach Paul Maurice compared Suzuki to Aleksander Barkov. Suzuki went on to record three point night and was dominant at both ends of the ice.

The compliments continued on Tuesday ahead of the Canadiens visit to Bridgestone arena to face off with the Nashville Predators. Preds centre Ryan O’Reilly enthused about Suzuki and how much he enjoys to watch him. For the captain of the 2019 Stanley Cup winning St. Louis Blues to comment on Suzuki’s two way game is a huge compliment.

It’s crystal clear that Suzuki has gained the league’s attention and respect. O’Reilly’s mentioning of No. 14 in the same breath as Henrik Zetterberg, Anze Kopitar and Patrice Bergeron tells you all you need to know. Suzuki has a long way to go before reaching those heights, but he is on the right track.

All three of those guys have Stanley Cup rings, and much like Suzuki, their teams leaned heavily on them, and for Kopitar the Kings still do. As for O’Reilly, he has been a large part of the Predators success, who are riding an eight game winning streak into the game against Montreal. It’s reassuring - not that it was needed - to hear Suzuki getting recognition for what he has been able to do. 

With hindsight being 20/20 I often question the Vegas Golden Knights being reluctant to trade Cody Glass. Offering Suzuki instead will go on to be one of the best acquisitions in Canadiens history. It’s impossible to picture Suzuki on any other team now.

The character, resiliency and hard working aspects of his personality make him the perfect leader. He has shouldered the weight of a rebuild seamlessly and has grown because of it. Although it can be hectic in Montreal, Suzuki has continued to grow and mould into what promises to be a very good player. 

Perhaps good enough to lead the Habs, the last Canadian team to win a cup (1993), back to Stanley Cup glory.