by Mathieu Chagnon, Staff Writer, All Habs Hockey Magazine

Shea Weber (Photo by Jean-Yves Ahern/USA TODAY Sports)

This is the fourth and the last part of the Canadiens players points prediction. The finale will include review of: Shea Weber, Phillip Danault, Jakub Jerabek, Charles Hudon and David Schlemko.

So far in this series we have looked at the number of points for the following players: Max Pacioretty, Thomas  Plekanec, Ales Hemsky, Karl Alzner, Jonathan Drouin, Brendan Gallagher, Andrew Shaw, Mark Streit, Torrey Mitchell, Alex Galchenyuk, Artturi Lekhonen, Paul Byron, Jeff Petry and Jordie Benn.

If you missed them, you can read part one here part two here and part three here.

Here’s how to read the charts below.

For each player, you will prominently see my points prediction that they will record in 2017-’18, their statistics for 2016-’17 and their SATSE score.

If, you aren’t familiar with SATSE, it is a new predictive metric that I developed. You can read about it in detail in this in this article.

SATSE FAR: Shot Attempts For Above Replacement
SATSE AAR: Shot Attempts Against Above Replacement

I welcome your own predictions in the comments section.

52

2016-17 GP G A SATSE FAR 1 SATSE AAR 2
SHEA WEBER 78 17 25 53.4% 54.2%

 

Shea Weber was seen practicing his swing with the Toronto Blue Jays this summer. Weber showed that, no matter the stick he uses, he’s got power. 

Last season Weber had a fair amount of points, but it was his lowest since 2009-10 with .54 points per game. 

Last season everything was new for him in this new city. Like Weber said himself, it was really like first day of school. But now with distractions behind him, he should be more comfortable in an environment that he calls home.

The former Nashville captain will start his second season in Montreal, and the blockbuster trade is now something in the past. Over his twelve year career, whenever he had a less productive season, Weber always found a way to return with a stronger one.

With increased depth up front, it will help to add to his production. Weber could find himself in the range of 20 goals and 35 assists. The 2017-’18 season will allow him the chance to reach several milestones such as 900 games played (currently at 841), 500 points (now at 485) and the 200 goals (17 goals away).

48

2016-17 GP G A SATSE FAR SATSE AAR
PHILLIP DANAULT 82 13 27 51.7% 49.5%

 

While he was property of the Chicago Blackhawks, Phillip Danault suffered multiple injuries that slowed his development. At his first training camp with the Canadiens in 2016, Danault was confident that he would have a better season since he was fully recovered from his injuries.

After joining the first line in mid-December, the Victoriaville native accumulated most of his points, maintaining a ratio of .55 points per games. Though he struggled early in the season, Danault’s defensive play improved throughout the season becoming effective at both ends of the rink and maintaining a solid success rate the faceoff circle.

Danault will arrive at a second straight training camp without health issues but would be wise not to assume anything. He had his best season in 2016-’17, but wants to prove that he can do better.

With this objective in mind, Danault would like to significantly improve his offensive contribution and become closer to his ideal model, Patrice Bergeron. To do so, he bought a  synthetic surface to train his puck skills at home during the off-season.

Danault should enter the season with a lot of confidence. Ideally, Danault is the Canadiens third line centre but don’t be surprised to see him pushing for one of the top two centre spots and getting a fair share of ice time.

31

2016-17 GP G A SATSE FAR SATSE AAR
JAKUB JERABEK

 

Jakub Jerabek has played his whole professional career in Europe so far. Having never been drafted, the 26-year-old defensemen stayed in the Czech league until last season, when he played with Vityaz Podolsk of the KHL.

Jerabek aroused the interest of many NHL team recording 34 points in 59 games with HC Vityaz, an equivalent of .58 point per game. By comparison, Nikita Zaitsev from the Toronto Maple Leafs had a ratio of .57 point per game during his last season in the KHL. Zaitsev was a member of Moscow CSKA, an elite organisation, then came to North America putting up 36 points during his first full season in the NHL.

Jerabek is ready to play a different game having been prepared by former Canadiens defenseman, Jaroslav Spacek.

“The pace of the game is faster in the NHL. There’s also more contact than there’s is in Europe. Like Spacek told me, I must get used to playing simpler game. I can’t keep possession of the puck too long. I have to make plays very quickly.” — Jakub Jerabek

Jerabek is a wild card and a time of adjustment should be expected. His speed could help him to transitione his success to the NHL level. In my opinion, we can expect approximately five goals and 30 assists from him.

26

2016-17 GP G A SATSE FAR SATSE AAR
CHARLES HUDON 3 0 2 54.3% 60.8%

 

Is Charles Hudon going to start in the NHL this season? Well, it is not going to be a walk in the park to get there. Kid Hudon had some bad luck with injuries that didn’t help his development and he has had consistency issues with his performance.

On top of that, Hudon’s stature works against him being in an organization that already has many small players.

The Canadiens will have to expose Hudon to waivers if they don’t keep him in Montreal to start the season. As a skilled prospect, he could draw interest from a few teams.

That could mean that Hudon could begin the 2017-18 season with the Canadiens. This would give him a prime opportunity to prove himself. To stay, Hudon will have to be an offensive threat at the NHL level, show that he can play against bigger opposition and vastly improve his defensive game. 

So far in six games in the big league, Hudon has been able to tally four assists. It is well known that talented young players tend to perform well in the first few games of a recall. Over the course of a full season, it will be difficult to sustain the production.

I would say that it will be a successful full season if he can contribute 10 to 15 goals and 15 assists.

14

2016-17 GP G A SATSE FAR SATSE AAR
DAVID SCHLEMKO 62 2 16 50.2% 54.4%

 

David Schlemko will be playing for his sixth team over the last four seasons, not including  the Vegas Golden Knights, where he was claimed during the expansion draft. A day later, the Canadiens acquired Schlemko from Vegas for a fifth-round pick.

Schlemko is a smooth skater who can transport the puck and a player that can make a good first pass. He is not the type of defensemen that will add many points but he is very effective in the defensive zone. Schlemko led the Sharks last season with 6.47 shots blocked per 60 minutes (rank 15th.)

Expect to see him on a role on the third pair with Jordie Benn. And like Benn, Schlemko can play on both sides of the ice and will be able to move up the lineup when injuries arise. Schlemko should playing close to 60 games and record 14 points.

  • Bay_Bye

    Weber has been slowly decreasing in his skillset and with no Josi in Montreal I think you are giving him too much credit…within the next year or so he will drift off his level of play. Schlemko playing on 6 teams in 4 years shows his game has to have holes or else he would not have been available and remember Montreal got him for basically nothing so shows his worth is not that great