The Canadiens, like 28 of the other 29 teams in the NHL have shrugged off the importance of Sweden as a source of top level NHL talent. The exception, of course, is the Detroit Red Wings. The Canadiens, thanks to a key addition to their scouting department appear to have finally picked up on the draft potential of Swedish players.
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The Canadian Hockey League announced Thursday the suspension of Canadiens prospect Dalton Thrower of the Saskatoon Blades under supplemental discipline for the balance of the 2013 MasterCard Memorial Cup. The suspension was for a check to the head that occurred in the first period of Wednesday’s game that injured opponent Taylor Leier of the Portland Winterhawks.
Alexei Emelin’s season ended with a hard collision with the Boston Bruins Milan Lucic on April 6th at the Bell Centre. The Canadiens and Emelin finally opted for reconstructive surgery this week after a one month delay while swelling surrounding the left knee was reduced allowing doctors to diagnose tears to both his MCL and ACL. He will not be available to the Canadiens until December.
Defenceman Magnus Nygren, a Canadiens fourth round pick in 2011 and 2012 second round pick Sebastian Collberg have signed entry level contracts. Both will report to the Canadiens development camp in July. Collberg is expected to return to Sweden for one more development year. Nygren, named the top defenceman in the Swedish Elitserien will be auditioning for a position with next season’s Hamilton Bulldogs.
During that February 9th fight filled Leafs/Canadiens fiasco Max Pacioretty accused Mikhail Grabovsky of biting his wrist. Grabovsky has finally admitted to the dirty deed.
In the span of five months the Canadiens Alex Galchenyuk has been a key factor in two World Championship medals for the United States. He was part of the gold medal winning US team at the World Junior Championship in January and Sunday in Stockholm Sweden he scored twice during a shootout against Finland to secure a bronze medal for the USA.
The Canadiens have yet to announce it, but word has leaked out of Sweden that the hockey club has signed defenseman Magnus Nygren to a two year entry level contract. Last month, Nygren (pronounced Noo’-Gren) was named the 2013 Salming Trophy winner. The award goes annually to the best Swedish defenseman outside of the NHL.
Raphael Diaz and his teammates gave Switzerland it’s first opportunity to win a World Hockey Championship gold medal since 1935 when they defeated the United States 3-0 in the tournament semi-final Saturday night in Stockholm. It was Switzerland’s 9th consecutive win in the tournament, a string that started with a win over Sweden and included
The Canadiens will have to settle for three candidates for post season awards. Michel Therrien was excluded from the nomination list for coach of the year when the NHL announced it’s finalists Friday. The nominees are Paul MacLean of the Ottawa Senators, Bruce Boudreau of the Anaheim Ducks and Chicago’s Joel Quenneville.
Losses by Team Canada and the Czech Republic have left P.K. Subban and Tomas Plekanec out in the cold at the World Hockey Championships. Switzerland won it’s eighth straight game and the U.S. handed Russia it’s worst loss in history meaning Raphael Diaz, Alex Galchenyuk and Danny Kristo advance.