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Canadian camp: Cole Caufield has lost none of his touch SHARE Jonathan Bernier
It was only the first day of training camp, the first intrasquad game. Nevertheless, Cole Caufield proved that he had lost none of his precision.
The Habs' top scorer last year led his group with two goals, one of which came in an opening the size of a matchbox. Well, in the sequence goalkeeper Joe Vrbetic closed the angle as effectively as a garage league goalie, but still. It was good to see that Caufield, whose season ended abruptly on January 15 due to a shoulder injury, still had the touch.
“I had the whole summer to work on my shot. I didn’t lose too many,” he said, smirking, a few minutes later.
“Finding small openings, he excels at that,” said Nick Suzuki , who will once again be his main accomplice this season.
Moreover, during the summer, many people wondered who would have the opportunity to complete the Canadian's first trio. Kirby Dach, who was the most consistent to the right of Caufield and Suzuki last winter? Sean Monahan, back to full health? Josh Anderson, the Burlington express?
“There are several good candidates who can play with us,” said the Canadian captain. Marty [Martin St-Louis] may have a difficult choice to make. »
What criteria should the head coach use to make his decision?
“Someone who is capable of creating plays and winning fights for getting the puck. Someone who can support us and bring something different than what Cole and I bring to each other,” Suzuki listed.
“It takes someone who is competitive in all three zones. This is the most important aspect,” added Caufield as part of his response.
An opportunity for Heineman
On Thursday, it was Emil Heineman who had the honor of completing the unit of the two young stars of the Canadian.
“I only had him a few seconds before the first puck, when the coaches told me, said the Swede. I wasn't nervous. I took it as a great opportunity.
“I can learn a lot from these players,” he added. With them, you have to be constantly ready to receive the puck, because they are sure to spot you on the ice. »
Rightly, Heineman was quick to point out that it was too early to draw conclusions. Despite everything, his profile is interesting.
“He was very good when he returned to Laval last year. He scored a bunch of goals, Suzuki recalled. He's not afraid to take shots and he puts himself in good spots to do so. He is a power forward. »
Indeed, upon his return to North America, the 21-year-old striker made his shot do the talking by scoring 7 goals in 11 games.
That said, the road is still a long time until October 11, the date of the first match of the season and openings are limited, if not practically non-existent.