The Montreal Canadiens announced today that 17 players have been assigned to the St. John's IceCaps of the American Hockey League.
Mac Bennett is starting the last year of his entry level deal and he will do so by playing on the top defensive pairing in St. John's.
Nicolas Blanchard was a late addition to the training camp roster, signing an AHL professional tryout contract after several injuries during the rookie tournament opened up a spot.
Tim Bozon made a remarkable recovery from a life threatening situation, playing preseason games this year, and not looking out of place. A season in the AHL will only help in his development.
Travis Brown will provide the IceCaps with some depth on defence.
Connor Crisp hopes to have a healthy season this year so that he can finally start finding some consistency in his game. At this point he risks starting the season in the ECHL.
Josiah Didier was not able to sign a NHL entry deal, so hopefully he can show the organization his worth while playing on an AHL deal this season.
Markus Eisenschmid stood out during development camp and was invited back for training camp on a professional tryout, however an injury kept him out of any on-ice action.
Stefan Fournier has shown very little since since signing a three year entry level contract. He's in his final year of that deal, and he will have to work hard to impress the organization enough to keep him after the season is over.
Zachary Fucale will start his first professional season in a battle for the backup job in St. John's With Eddie Pasquale. A start to the season in the ECHL is not out of the question for him just to give him plenty of ice time. Fucale will hope to find stability in his play after a wildly oscillating season last year.
Ryan Johnston impressed during the rookie tournament, and again during training camp, and whispers were starting to be heard that he would compete for an NHL roster spot this season. The cut is not really surprising though due to the tight race for depth defenceman already.
Brett Lernout is headed to St. John's for his first professional season after finishing last season in Hamilton for the Bulldogs after his WHL season came to an end.
Mark MacMillan is playing the first year of his two year entry deal. He is an unknown commodity since he was injured for training camp.
Brandon McNally was the first player signed for the upcoming season to an AHL contract. He will provide depth for the IceCaps.
Angelo Miceli was the big surprise revelation in the rookie training camp, playing well enough on professional tryout contract to impress the organization.
Eddie Pasquale was a fan favourite last year when he played with the IceCaps, and he returns this year in a backup role.
Dalton Thrower is not transitioning very well to the pro game, dealing with injuries and then trying to catch up while playing games in the ECHL. It's possible that he is destined to play there again to start the year.
Jamal Watson did not play very much during the preseason, but scored a nice breakaway goal during the rookie tournament.