A day after recalling centerman David Desharnais from the Hamilton Bulldogs, the Montreal Canadiens surprised everybody again with the announcement that Max Pacioretty will now be joining the big club. The 6'2", 208 pound, 22 year old winger is no stranger to the NHL and has played 86 games with the Habs during the last two seasons recording a total of 25 points (6 goals, 19 assists). So far this season, Pacioretty has played 27 games with the Hamilton Bulldogs and is tied for first on the 'Dogs and tied for second in the AHL with 32 points (17 goals, 15 assists). He was also named the Reebok/AHL played of the month of November during which he posted 17 points (10 goals and 7 assists) in 13 games. Pacioretty also leads the league (AHL) in goals and is tied for second with seven power-play goals.
Pacioretty, drafted in the 1st round (22nd overall) by Montreal during the 2007 NHL entry draft, made some controversial comments about the Habs management during his "séjour" in Montreal in the 2009-2010 season. He was critical of head coach Jacques Martin's decisions about demoting him or sitting him out every time he made a mistake and considered himself to be in Coach Martin's proverbial doghouse. He also expressed his desires to only play on the top two lines of the team or to spend the season in the AHL to further improve his skills and his confidence. It should be noted that Coach Martin was present at the Copps Coliseum today where the Bulldogs played the Toronto Marlies and won the game by a score of 5-1.
The match also saw David Desharnais back in Hamilton. Desharnais was recalled by the Habs yesterday before their game against the Toronto Maple Leafs but was not part of the lineup as the Habs decided to dress seven defencemen instead of Desharnais or Dustin Boyd. In retrospect, dressing seven defencemen ended up being a good decision as Jaroslav Spacek left the match early in the first period due to an undisclosed injury. There is still a possibility that Desharnais will be recalled before the Habs play their next game as no word has been made available regarding the injury to Veteran centerman Scott Gomez.