The Montréal Canadiens shouldn’t use Cayden Primeau as trade bait.
For those of you who don’t know who is Primeau is, he’s the best Canadiens goaltender prospect in their farm system. Primeau is the son of former Philadelphia Flyers forward Keith Primeau and the nephew of former Buffalo Sabres forward Wayne Primeau.
Primeau hails from Voorhees Township, New Jersey (a suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania). He’s a dual citizen of the United States and Canada, but represents the United States internationally.
Earlier this year, he manned the pipes for the United States World Junior team. In 5 games played at the World Juniors, he owned a 1.61 goals against average (GAA) and a .936 save percentage (SV%). While the United States failed to take home the gold at the World Juniors, however they did claim silver and played outstanding hockey. Primeau was a pivotal component to their success.
photo credit – Josh Tessler
Outside of Primeau’s international play, he’s the starting goaltender for Northeastern University. So far this season, Primeau has played in 26 games and has looked impressive. His butterfly style of play in net is exceptional and has paid off for the Northeastern Huskies. After 26 games, he has a 2.26 GAA and a .926 SV%.
Unfortunately for the young goalie, his stats have taken a minor dip when you compare them to his stats from last season. Last season, Primeau posted a 1.92 GAA and a .931 SV% in 34 games played. But, I wouldn’t read too much into the decline in his stats. Primeau plays in one of the most competitive college hockey divisions, the Hockey East. He faces tough competition every night and a slight dip in his stats isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
In addition, I watched Primeau play on Friday night against the University of Vermont. Throughout the course of the game, Primeau got hammered by Vermont’s offense as Northeastern was having difficulty keeping the puck out of their own zone. When Vermont was parked in Northeastern’s zone, he was very composed and made some magnificent glove saves. At the end of the game, he only allowed one goal and was able to post 31 saves. It was a pretty solid outing.
Don’t Use Primeau As Bait
With the trade deadline coming up, Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin will likely be looking to add a few pieces to make his roster stronger. Over the course of the last ten games, the Canadiens haven’t looked as strong as they did earlier in the season. In the last ten games, the Habs have posted a 4-4-2 record. Their performance as of late has hurt the Habs’ standing in the Eastern Conference. Currently, they sit in eighth place. So, it should be expected that Bergevin will be looking for some significant pieces prior to the deadline to get the Habs back in a more stable position in the Standings.
While Bergevin wants to have a competitive Habs roster, he needs to make sure that he doesn’t hurt the squad’s future either. Over the course of the last few years, the Canadiens starting goaltender Carey Price‘s health has been rather rocky at times. In addition, their current/former goaltender prospects including Charlie Lindgren and Zachary Fucale didn’t necessarily pan out the way that scouts had hoped they would have. With all that in mind and the fact that Price isn’t getting any younger, it’d be a mistake to trade an impressive prospect like Primeau.
stats from eliteprospects.com and hockey-reference.com
featured image photo credit – Nikos Michals