It is often said that before you are promoted in sports you have to be capable of dominating the level of the game in which you’re courently playing.

Domination is what you want, when it comes to Max Pacioretty’s last three weeks in the American Hockey League, domination is what you get.

On the afternoon of November 20th, Pacioretty recorded his first hattrick in professional hockey against the Toronto Marlies. It was a natural hattrick and he followed it with Hamilton’s only goal in the shootout loss. Going into that game Pacioretty had scored four goals in 15 games and had caused a minor uproar by saying he would prefer to continue to develop his game with regular ice time in Hamilton than sit on the bench as a third or fourth liner in Montreal.

Yesterday in Hamilton Pacioretty scored a goal an assist in a win over Toronto with Canadiens coach Jacques Martin watching. Apparently Martin saw enough. Right after the game Pacioretty was called up to the Canadiens where he will not be seeing third and fourth line ice time when the team takes on the Flyers on Wednesday.

Including his big day against Toronto in Pacioretty’s last twelve games he has scored thirteen goals and five assists for eighteen points with a rating of plus-2. The Canadiens are hoping he’s now capable of becoming the missing link on the left side of the Scott Gomez line.

Pacioretty practiced today with Brian Gionta and Tom Pyatt.  Pyatt was replacing Gomez, who was being treated for that lower body injury which is day to day.  That left Plekanec with Cammalleri and Moen. Andrei Kostitsyn moved to left wing with Jeff Halpern and Maxim Lapierre.

No sign of Jaroslav Spacek, who has a suspected wrist injury after that scrap with the Leaf’s Clarke MacArthur Saturday night.  Josh Gorges also took a therapy day to get treatment for something that’s been bothering him for two weeks now.  Dustin Boyd worked replaced Gorges for the purposes of today’s practice.

Here is today’s practice alignment. Don’t count on it looking like this on Wednesday:

          Cammalleri – Plekanec – Moen

             Pacioretty – Pyatt – Gionta

             Kostitsyn –  Halpern – Lapierre

                  Pouliot – Eller – Darche

Defence      Hamrlik     Subban

                    Picard       Weber

                    Gill            Boyd