Article content continued
The Canadiens selected the 5-foot-11, 182-pound defenceman in the second round (38th overall) of the 2018 NHL Draft.
Top D-men face heavy workload: Coach Claude Julien hasn’t decided on his third defence pairing for Saturday’s opening game against the Pittsburgh Penguins (8 p.m., CBC, SN, NBC, TVA Sports, TSN 690 Radio) but said he’ll probably be doing a lot of juggling to give maximum time to his three top defenders — Shea Weber, Ben Chiarot and Jeff Petry.
Julien will once again try to use all four lines up front, but getting the right matchups against Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkn will be difficult because the Penguins have the final line change.
Alex Belzile was deemed “unfit to practice” Friday, but we can say with some confidence it’s not COVID-19 related. Belzile was rocked by Toronto defenceman Jake Muzzin in Tuesday’s 4-2 exhibition game loss to the Leafs. Belzile hit his head against the end boards and played only one more shift after the hit.
NHL raises awareness: The NHL said it will use the opening day of the postseason to “pay tribute to those at the forefront of the anti-racism movement and the fight against COVID-19.”
It’s part of the NHL’s new #WeSkateFor initiative. The players will wear helmet decals in support of the Black Lines Matter movement.
Grammy Award winner Michael Bublé will appear virtually to sing O Canada before the Canadiens-Penguins game as well as the Chicago Blackhawks vs. Edmonton Oilers game in Edmonton (3 p.m., SN, NBC).