The votes are in after a strong, if less spectacular, November and a familiar face is carrying the Montreal Canadiens once again. If the team wants to be successful, they’ll need Carey Price to be at the top of his game and he’s certainly done just that. The depth scoring that carried the club through an almost perfect October has dried up a bit, but the top line featuring Alex Galchenyuk, Alexander Radulov…and Paul Byron most of the time, has done enough to keep the Habs at the top of the standings.
First Star: Carey Price
It’s not remotely surprising that Carey Price was voted the first star of November by our readers; I suspect it won’t be the last time. Price was his usual dominant self in November, keeping the Habs in games they had business winning and delivering MVP-like performances on a regular basis. He’s a rock solid, calming presence on the back and seems to give the team a confidence boost every time he steps on the ice. Price has proven to be almost unbeatable on home ice, boasting a 12-1-1 record at this point, and finds himself among the league leaders in most categories this season.
Stats: 11 GP, 8-2-1, 1.81 G.A.A., 0.944 SV%
Second Star: Alex Galchenyuk
Already a fifth year pro at the age of 22, Galchenyuk has been putting it all together this season. He’s emerged as the first line centre with size that that Canadiens have been hoping, looking and waiting for and was dominant at times during November. He scored at a point per game pace and continued to develop strong chemistry with Alexander Radulov, giving the Habs their first true top line in years. Unfortunately he suffered a knee injury at the beginning of December, so the club will have to make do without their best offensive playmaker for 6-8 weeks.
Stats: 14 GP, 6 G, 8 A, 14 PTS, +4 rating
Third Star: Alexander Radulov
Radulov continued to impress in his second month with the Canadiens, with his growing bond with Alex Galchenyuk forming the bulk of the team’s offensive attack. He has proven to be a handful night and night out for opposing defences and showcases his tremendous ability to protect the puck and generate chances on a regular basis. His effect on the Canadiens has been significant, he not only helps balance the top six, but bring passion and intensity that permeates the group.
Stats: 12 GP, 2 G, 9 A, 11 PTS, +3 rating
Honourable Mention: Andrei Markov
The General has been quietly putting together an excellent start to the season, playing big minutes and racking up the points. He’s showcased the great passing, poise and string positional defending that Canadiens fans have come to take for granted consistently this season. The veteran is closing in on 1,000 games played, all of them with the Habs, since being drafted in the 6th round (162nd overall) in 1998.
Stats: 14 GP, 2 G, 11 A, 13 PTS, +4 rating
Thanks for voting!