Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Habs Assign Andreas Engqvist to Hamilton

We've generally shy'ed away from creating a new post for a predictable cut (e.g. Aaron Palushaj and Mike Blunden were also sent to the Bulldogs today; geez it's like Christmas in Hamilton!), but this one caught us a little off guard.

After claiming Blair Betts off waivers today, the Canadiens announced that Andreas Engqvist was assigned to the Hamilton Bulldogs. This, along with Jeff Woywitka once he clears waivers tomorrow, will be the team's final cuts before the opener.

Engqvist, 23, had been penciled into the fourth line center role, but had a poor training camp, hence creating the need to acquire Betts. There wasn't a need to cut Engqvist, as even with him, the roster would have remained at 23 players given two are on IR, but it will do him better to be playing good minutes in Hamilton rather than sitting in the press box in Montreal. It's interesting, though, that they've chosen to keep just 22 players for now. It means that no cut will be required when either Andrei Markov or Ryan White (whoever is first) returns, but also opens a space for a potential addition.

This move also confirms that Travis Moen will be healthy enough to play in the season opener, and thus leaves the Canadiens with the following final team to open the 2011-12 NHL season:

Mike Cammalleri - Tomas Plekanec - Andrei Kostitsyn
Max Pacioretty - Scott Gomez - Brian Gionta
Mathieu Darche - David Desharnais - Erik Cole
Travis Moen - Blair Betts - Yannick Weber

Hal Gill - P.K. Subban
Chris Campoli - Josh Gorges
Jaroslav Spacek - Raphael Diaz

Carey Price
Peter Budaj

Press Box: Lars Eller (injured), Alexei Emelin
Injured Reserve: Andrei Markov, Ryan White

With this roster, the team has about $1.8M in cap space remaining.

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