Major turnaround concerning a Canadiens prospect

Published October 5, 2023 at 9:21 PM
BY ELIAS
Every year, we witness some very interesting surprises during the Montreal Canadiens' training camp. If last year many observers were surprised to see rookie Arber Xhekaj earn a spot with the team, we must admit that Mattias Norlinder's rise this season is quite surprising.

In the last year of his contract, no one expected to see him fight for a spot in Martin St-Louis' lineup. Indeed, even though he was seen as one of the most promising defensemen in the organization three years ago, he wasn't really part of the organization's plans anymore with the addition of youngsters such as David Reinbacher, Logan Mailloux, Lane Hutson, William Trudeau, and Adam Engstrom.

Yet, with less than a week to go before the first game of the regular season, Norlinder is still with the team and might well surprise everyone by starting the year in the NHL. What a major turnaround; we are very happy to see that he has regained his confidence and is able to play to the best of his abilities.

Furthermore, the head coach of the Montreal Canadiens, Martin St-Louis, has notably described the Swede as being part of the 2023-2024 roster, who should definitely play games with the team this season even if he starts the year in Laval.


To think that a few weeks ago, a rumor stated that the 23-year-old defenseman would not attend training camp to continue his career in Europe. One thing's for sure, he definitely made the right decision to stay in North America and continue his journey with the Montreal organization.

"Just a few weeks ago, Norlinder's agent categorically denied a rumor that the defenseman would not attend the CH camp."

"As I write these lines, Norlinder is still in Montreal with a preseason game to play." -Nicolas Cloutier

He most likely won't become a top 2 defenseman in the coming years, but he could certainly play an important role among the defense and on the Canadiens' power play. It will be very interesting to see if Mattias Norlinder will make Martin St-Louis' roster for the upcoming season.

He has undoubtedly made an excellent impression, and he may be a top choice if any injuries occur during the year. Do you think Norlinder has done enough to earn a contract extension next summer?


Credit: Habs et LNH
DOES MATTIAS NORLINDER DESERVE TO START THE SEASON WITH THE CANADIENS?
OCTOBER 5      104 ANSWERS
YES5855.8 %
NO, BUT HE DESERVES TO BE CALLED UP FIRST3836.5 %
NO87.7 %
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