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Owen Beck should have been given one more game in Montreal

The Canadiens could have kept Beck for Tuesday’s rematch with the Sens, and why not give him that second crack?

Montreal Canadiens v Ottawa Senators Photo by André Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

Debuting in the National Hockey League at 18 years old, in the middle of a season where you’ve spent almost all of your time in the OHL, can’t be easy. Doing so as an emergency recall for a Montreal Canadiens roster that has been decimated by injuries, and struggling to win even when healthy, must be flat-out terrifying.

Though the Ottawa Senators shut the Habs out 5-0, Owen Beck should be proud of his NHL debut.

It was a pretty rough night possession-wise for his line, but this was to be expected given that it was their first time playing together, doing so on short notice. Being called up last night, he didn’t exactly get much of a chance to develop chemistry with Jesse Ylonen and Christian Dvorak before being tossed out there in an NHL game. It was tough.

But there were flashes from Beck of a highly effective NHLer. The highlight above was one of, if not the best chance the Habs had in the second period. His skating in particular looked like it can keep him up with the speed of the NHL, and that, if nothing else, is a good sign for his eventual chances of having an impact with the Canadiens.

It was about as good as I think you could ask any kid plucked from the OHL mid-season to do on these Montreal Canadiens. It seems odd to me that the team decided to send him immediately back to the Peterborough Petes, when the CHL/NHL agreement could have permitted him to play in Tuesday’s rematch with the Senators.

I think he showed enough in that first game to warrant a second shot. Since they’re not worried about wins and losses at this stage anyways, I’m not sure why they felt he needed to go back after just the one game.

At any rate, it should be interesting to see how he does in the Petes’ game today, and if that taste of the NHL lit an extra fire under him for the remainder of his season.

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