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Monday Habs Links: Nathan Beaulieu is key to Montreal's success

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Here are your daily links surrounding the Habs and the rest of the hockey world, including Max Pacioretty leading both on and off the ice and Nathan Beaulieu's growing confidence.

Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Montreal Canadiens Links

  • Max Pacioretty continues to lead both on and off the ice. After a two goal performance that brought him to a team-leading 29 goals on the season, Pacioretty spoke about his lethal one-timer. He also praised youngsters Nathan Beaulieu and Christian Thomas for their solid play. [The Gazette]
  • There's no doubt Pacioretty is one of the favourites to become the 29th captain in Canadiens history. His play speaks for itself, but the 26-year-old is taking french lessons; showing his maturation off the ice as well. [TVA]
  • As Pacioretty mentioned, Beaulieu has emerged as a key contributor on the Habs blue line. Fresh off his best game of the season, the 22-year-old defenseman joined L'Antichambre to speak about his growth as a player. [RDS]
  • Speaking of Beaulieu, it's quite apparent that he is oozing with more and more confidence every game. [La Presse]
  • As expected, Alexei Emelin has been placed on injured reserve. He could miss as many as six weeks with a shoulder injury that he sustained against the Ottawa Senators last week. [EOTP]
  • The Canadiens are often criticized for their poor offensive numbers, yet they still sit atop the Eastern Conference standings. Kevin Allen asks: Why isn't anyone talking about the Montreal Canadiens. [USA Today]

Around the League and Elsewhere

  • Check out this great read by Arik Parnass on the growing-importance of analytics in the evolution of today's game. [NHL]
  • Ex-Hab and current Buffalo Sabres defenseman Josh Gorges is done for the season. He will have surgery to fix a lower body injury. [Die By The Blade]
  • With an NHL leading 38 goals, Alex Ovechkin has dominated all season long; putting his previous struggles behind him. Ovechkin has also become a much better two-way player. His strong defensive play under head coach Barry Trotz has contributed to his revival as one of the league's elite players. [NHL]
  • Top prospect Connor McDavid was a total beast over the weekend, recording five points on Saturday night. He now has an absolutely mind-blowing 92 points in just 36 games for the Erie Otters of the OHL. [Peterborough Examiner]
  • And lastly, here is every hockey player's worst nightmare coming true. Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson takes a slap shot to the groin from Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara. Ouch! [Pete Blackburn]