Former first round draft choice Louis Leblanc has earned another shot at making the Canadiens.
Leblanc was a healthy scratch from the Hamilton Bulldogs lineup Sunday afternoon prompting speculation that he was on the verge of being called up to the parent club. The Canadiens made it official after the game. Leblanc will join the Canadiens for their morning skate at MadisonSquareGarden Monday morning and will be available when the Canadiens take on the Rangers Monday night.
Leblanc was one of the earliest Canadiens cuts in training camp and struggled through the first four games of the Hamilton season, in which he produced no points. He then exploded with four goals, including two overtime game winners, plus two assists over his next three games to earn the promotion.
Leblanc played in 42 games with the Canadiens two years ago, recording 5 goals and 5 assists. He started the lockout season with Hamilton and suffered an high ankle sprain in late October, something that seriously damaged his skating ability. He finished the season with 10 goals and eight assists in 62 games. It was clear, even as he was not scoring in the early games this season, his speed had returned.
Prior to and following Saturday night’s game against the San Jose Sharks the Canadiens re-assigned defencemen Greg Pateryn and Nathan Beaulieu plus forward Patrick Holland to the Bulldogs. The Holland assignment was withdrawn pending evaluation of what appeared to be a third period cheekbone injury suffered by Travis Moen in the late stages of the game against the Sharks. Moen did not accompany the team to New York and becomes the ninth member of the team miss at least a game with injury this season.