The start of the Montreal Canadiens 2017-18 season sees a semi overhaul on defence, and the arrival of top 6 forward Jonathan Drouin.
Gone are Andre Markov, Nathan Beaulieu, Bryan Flynn, Dwight King, and Steve Ott.
#92 Jonathan Drouin
The big splash acquisition in the off season was Jonathan Drouin. Drouin wore #27 with Tampa, but went entirely with a new # with Montreal. #92. The only other Habs player to wear #92 was Steve Ott last season.
#83 Ales Hemsky
Ales Hemsky was a low risk UFA signing. Hemsky has played with four different organizations. All four teams (EDM, DAL, OTT and now MTL) he has worn #83. And Hemsky too is only the second player to ever wear #83. Eric Bertrand wore it for the 3 games he played with the Canadiens back in 2001.
#32 Mark Streit
This marked the second tour of duty of Mark Streit with the Canadiens. He played with the Canadiens for 3 seasons (2005-08) when he wore #32. Eleven different players wore #32. Claude Lemieux wore if for his six seasons with the Canadens (1984-90). Travis Moen wore it for five seasons (2010-15). Streit and the Canadiens have since parted ways as Streit appeared in only 2 games before being released unconditionally.
#53 Victor Mete
Victor Mete was a surprise out of the Canadiens development camp, and he carried over his surprising play into training camp. Enough to impress GM Marc Bergevin, and Mete made the team. As with all rookies he was given a number; #53. Mete is the seventh player to wear #53. Ryan White wore it longest for parts of five season (2010-14).
#22 Karl Azner
Karl Azner was the Canadiens big off-season UFA signing. He opted for #22. A number worn by 26 players in Habs history. Most notable are John Ferguson 1964-71, and Steve Shutt 1973-85. For trivia buffs, before Alzner, the last Habs player to wear #22 was Sergei Sergachev who wore it for the 4 games he appeared in October 2016.
#45 Joe Morrow
Joe Morrow was another depth defenceman UFA signing. Morrow came from the Boston Bruins organization where he also wore #45. Other Canadiens to wear #45 were: Gilbert Dionne 1990-94, Aaron Asham 1999-2002.
#21 David Schlemko
David Schlemko was acquired from the expansion Vegas Golden Knights. The Canadiens is Schlemko’s sixth NHL organization. And he went with an entirely different number; #21. A number worn by 33 other players. Last worn last year briefly by Dwight King. Two former Habs captains wore #21; Brian Gionta wore it for his five seasons with the Canadiens (2010-14), as did Guy Carbonneau for 11 seasons (1983-94).
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