Three players who must stand out in the pre-season finale

The Montreal Canadiens’ pre-season will happily end tonight. Eight exhibition games are more than enough to determine who is ready for the regular season.

There were so many pre-season games that the team started camp with a ridiculous 74 players in attendance. When you looked at the roster this summer, there were around 30 players who had a chance of making the initial 23-player roster for opening night.

Add to that another dozen who will definitely be heading to the Laval Rocket, a handful of players who were clearly destined to start the season in the ECHL and a few interesting prospects who were surely heading back to the Junior and you had a pretty long list on the training camp list.

Currently, the list stands at around 30 if you don’t include players like Paul Byron, Joel Edmundson and Carey Price who won’t be healthy on opening night. Edmundson should be back at the start of the season, Price won’t play at all this season and Byron’s status is somewhere, anywhere, between those two results.

That means we’re down from the number we might have guessed in August. These are the approximately 30 players who had a chance of making the initial list. With just one more pre-season game to go, there’s still a lot at stake for a handful of players.

A few veterans don’t look great and could be in danger of losing their spot to a younger player. A few young players have made good impressions but really need to prove they’re ready since they can be sent to the AHL without having to go through waivers.

So who needs a good performance tonight in Game 8 of the pre-season? A game that will be played in Bouctouche, New Brunswick as part of the Kraft Hockeyville festival. You know, the same Hockeyville that Sportsnet advertises all season long, who doesn’t show up to put the game on TV? Yeah, that one.

I hope you have TVA Sports on your TV, or at least you can find it online where there will be a free stream of the game. You need to sign up for a free account, but you can watch a live stream with an announcement in French.

Either way, once you find this game, there are three players who need to stand out or they might not be in the starting lineup on opening night.

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