The Habs have had many notable international players suit up for them over the years. Who were their best ones from Russia? Vote for your all-time Canadiens Russian top line!
With the ongoing pandemic set to last for a while yet, it’s time to look back at some of the top international players in Montreal Canadiens history. But rather than just pick the top players from each country ourselves, we wanted to open things up to our readers and let you pick the teams. Over the coming weeks, we will be posting a series of five polls in the following order:
Week 1: Sweden
Week 2: Russia
Week 3: Finland
Week 4: Czech Republic
Week 5: Team Europe (all other international countries)
To qualify for voting, players must have suited up in at least one game with the Canadiens. Those guidelines had to be loosened a bit for goaltenders as the Habs haven’t had a goalie from each of those countries play for them. If the Habs didn’t have a goalie from a specific country play for them, voting (if applicable) will be based on netminders that were drafted by the team. Players are slotted according to their birth country, not which one they represent(ed) internationally if it differed from where they were born.
For this exercise, we’re going to be assembling a top line that consists of three forwards, two defencemen, and one goalie.
When voting, please make your selections based on their contributions with the Canadiens only and not the rest of their NHL and international careers. Click here for a listing of the all-time stats for the Habs.
Here are the players to select from for Russia.
The Habs haven’t had a goalie born in Russia play for them and only drafted one that was born there (Vadim Tarasov, who briefly played for AHL Quebec, played for Russia internationally but was born in Kazakhstan so he doesn’t qualify here). As a result, that netminder will make the team by default.
Additionally, 2001 first-round pick Alexander Perezhogin also represented Russia internationally but was born in Kazakhstan so he is not listed among the forward group here. He will be on the Team Europe ballot instead.
Please cast your ballot by Friday, May 8th. Results will be posted on Saturday, May 9th.