Three Reasons Montreal Canadiens Season Is Huge Success

Oct 4, 2022; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens forward Cole Caufield.
Oct 4, 2022; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens forward Cole Caufield. / Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
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The First Line Is Here, And It Is Amazing

The best teams in the NHL each season always have a top line that is dominant. They need to have that first line that can dominate the opposition and help the team win many games, and even fire a couple of quick goals in an otherwise sleepy game.

We see this in Colorado where Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen pair up to form a tremendous first line. They were forced to move on from Gabriel Landeskog when he was injured and have found chemistry with others in the meantime, but it always remained a dominant trio.

The Boston Bruins were one of the best teams in the league over the past decade and most of that saw Patrice Bergeron centering Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak. The Maple Leafs are a great regular season team with Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews carrying the first line though their left winger is a revolving door.

There is no revolving door needed on the Canadiens top line anymore. First overall pick Juraj Slafkovsky has been paired up with Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield and the trio has been excellent together.

Slafkovsky, a 19 year old winger, has scored ten goals and 22 points in his last 24 games. In that same time period, Caufield has scored 11 goals and 23 points while Suzuki leads the way with 12 goals and 27 points.

The Canadiens have not had a point per game player since Alex Kovalev scored 84 points in 2007-08. Suddenly, they have three young players all playing near that rate. It has been only about a third of a season, but there is more reason to believe they will get better together than fall off their current pace.

If nothing else happens in 2023-24 other than the birth of an elite first line with the Canadiens, the season will have been a complete success.