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- With a $5 M cap hit, Sergei Gonchar is one of the most expensive d-men in franchise history. The only ones higher are P.K. Subban ($9 M), Andrei Markov ($5.75 M), Mathieu Schneider ($5.75 M), and Roman Hamrlik ($5.5 M).
The Habs kept their 3rd overall pick on Friday night and used it to select centre Alex Galchenyuk. The Sarnia centre missed all but the final two games of the regular season due to an ACL injury but was healthy enough to put up four points in six postseason games. He becomes the highest player to be selected by Montreal since Doug Wickenheiser.
The 6'0, 198 lb forward stormed onto the scene in 2010-11 after being the first overall pick in the 2010 OHL Priority Draft, putting up 83 points in 68 games. That put him second in the league in rookie scoring behind first overall selection Nail Yakupov. Before joining Sarnia, he was the MWEHL's leading scorer by a whopping 33 points in 2009-10.
Galchenyuk has moved around in his life, spending time in the USA, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and Russia. One place he hasn't lived is Belarus although that's who his father suited up for in the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics. Montreal's latest prospect plays internationally for the Americans.
TSN: "Alex is the center who makes everybody around him better and helps teams win. It begins with an excellent understanding of all the essential elements in the game. He plays a complete game and is a competitor in all the critical areas. He doesn't take shortcuts and values the plays that are important to winning."
The Hockey News: "Some of the comparisons you get, Iíve heard his game compared to Marian Hossa but Iíve heard when he was with Chicago he had the best hands since Bobby Ryan when he played in that league."
The Scouting Bureau: "Galchenyukís vision, stick wizardry and ability to operate in traffic are elite attributes and they complement his masterful playmaking skills perfectly. Alexís sturdy frame and strong stick makes him difficult to knock off of the puck and a force to deal with in the offensive zone often resulting in more space for his linemates."
Bergevin on Galchenyuk: "We had our eyes on him all along. `I met him a few times and I was impressed."
Galchenyuk on being drafted: ""I just love to play hockey and Iíll love to play hockey for the Montreal Canadiens, hopefully in the near future. I just canít wait."