58 players will hit the ice today for training camp for the first time since game 6 of Montreal's second round loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning last season. Montreal has an extremely low turnover rate from last spring's team which bodes will for the team chemistry for this season. New additions include Zack Kassian, Alex Semin and Tomas Fleischmann while the only significant subtraction was Brandon Prust. Montreal always boasts numerous story lines and here are the top 10 to watch out for during training camp and through out the season.
1. Alex Galchenyuk
Now that he will officially be playing centre, how will Galchenyuk fair?
2. Tomas Plekanec
Plekanec has been a very dependable player and a fan favorite since his arrival in Montreal. He is now in the last year of his contract and as an aging player who contending teams would love to have will Montreal trade or re sign him this season?
Tinordi was the team's 1st round pick in 2010 and has been passed by Beaulieu and Pateryn on the depth charts. With the top 6 spots on the Montreal blueline secured by Markov, Subban, Petry, Beaulieu, Emelin and Gilbert, will Montreal find room for Tinordi as a 7th defensemen or try and trade him?
4. Alex Semin/Zack Kassian
Semin and Kassian both come to camp with the words "enimic" and "potential attached" to their names. I am curious to see how both players' seasons will be played out and see if Semin can find his scoring touch like he had 2 years ago in Carolina and if Kassian can finally become a dominant power forward.
4. Max Pacioretty
Recently named the team's 29th captain, Max Pacioretty has been Montreal's most consistant and dominate offensive threat the last couple season. I would love to see him finally hit the 40 goal plateau, will this be the year?
6. Carey Price
Arguably the best player in the world, how much better can Carey Price get after taking home the Vezina and Hart trophy last year?
7. PK Subban
Coming off his announcement of donating $10 million to the Montreal Children's Hospital, PK turns his focus back to the ice. Will he be able to put in another Norris type season and lead the Canadiens to the conference finals?
Andrei Markov has been a work horse since his career with Montreal began. He is getting older every season and the signing of Jeff Petry long term can only be a positive. Petry can play harder minutes which can only mean Andrei will be fresher as the season rolls along and Markov won't be as run down when the playoffs begin.
Now that Galchenyuk is officially playing centre, what will happen to Eller and Desharnais? They are certainly more than capable to play a higher than a bottom 6 role.
10. Tomas Fleischmann
Tomas Fleischmann comes to camp on a PTO with the reputation of being a very serviceable player. He has had some health issues over the yeas such as blood clots and injuries however his is the type of player Michel Therrien likes and can be used in every situation.