The future Johnny Gaudreau of the Canadiens?

The future Johnny Gaudreau of the Canadiens?
The future Johnny Gaudreau of the Canadiens?

The Canadiens added eight players to their bank of prospects in the last National Hockey League (NHL) draft.

Obviously, the discussions, as is often customary after a selection session, mainly focused on the very first choice of the team. And this is completely normal. Kaiden Guhle is a top prospect and was ranked fairly high on several expert lists. His name was also known to most amateurs.

But as we said, apart from Guhle, seven other young players have recently joined the organization of the CH.

The selection of one of them did not generate the enthusiasm it should have.

With his final 4th round pick, Trevor Timmins and his team have set their sights on US forward Sean Farrell.

While this was Uncle Sam’s third consecutive skater to be called by the CH during this auction, the first instinct of many was to emphasize (even criticize) the fact that Farrell was not a Quebecer. If this observation is irrefutable, here is another which is equally so: Farrell is a fabulous hockey player.

An incredible season

The 19-year-old 5-foot-9, 175-pound left winger played last year in the United States Hockey League (USHL), the top junior circuit in the United States. Its performance? 15 goals and 41 assists (56 points) in … 44 games!

In fact, Farrell wrapped up last season as the USHL’s top passer.

He also collected only three points less than his teammate Brendan Brisson, who was for his part selected in … the first round by the Golden Knights!

How then to explain the fact that Farrell slipped until the 4th round?

The promising hope was kind enough to give his opinion on the subject as part of a generous interview offered at TVASports.ca.

“I’m not sure, honestly. Sometimes these things happen without us being able to really explain why. However, the selection rank remains only a number. After the draft, all hopes start on an equal footing. So I want to take advantage of the next few seasons to reach my full potential. ”

One thing is however certain, the striker was very happy to end up in Montreal.

“It was a very special moment for me. To join a team as prestigious as the Habs is wonderful. The city of Montreal is also a very nice place and the fans there know their hockey. The next few years will be very pleasant for me. ”

In the mold of Tyler Johnson?

You read it above: Sean Farrell is a fabulous game maker. But he can (and wants) to bring more to the rink than that. It is he himself who says it.

“My greatest quality is definitely my vision of the game. I think I have a very good sense of hockey. But my goal is to be an effective 200-footer. I want to be decisive on the power play, but also short of a man. I want my coach to be able to employ me wherever he wants without fear of being disappointed. “

And when offered the opportunity to compare his style of play with that of a current NHL skater, the sympathetic young man does not hesitate.

“I would say Tyler Johnson of the Tampa Bay Lightning. He’s a small player who finds his teammates all over the ice. In the past, he could play anywhere and with anyone in Tampa. ”

Many similarities with Johnny Gaudreau

Sean Farrell therefore likes to compare himself to Tyler Johnson.

But if you dwell on it for a few moments, it’s also easy to find several similarities between his profile and that of Calgary Flames star player Johnny Gaudreau.

We are after all talking about two small American players (Gaudreau also measures 5 feet 9 inches) who take pleasure in feeding the players with whom they evolve. But where the resemblance is most striking, it is in their selection rank: like Farrell, Gaudreau was also selected in the 4th round (2011).

When pointed out to him, Farrell nods. Then, full of conviction, he says this:

“It’s definitely very motivating. I want, like Johnny Gaudreau, to accomplish great things. I have always taken great pleasure in watching him play. I grew up following his exploits. He is one of the small players who does a solid job in the NHL. He often uses his small size to his advantage to beat opposing defenders. ”

And what does he want to say to people who are skeptical of him because of his small stature?

“Today there is endless evidence that younger players can dominate the NHL, too. You can produce at the highest level even if you are not the greatest. Today’s NHL is now a circuit where speed is the first quality sought.

As a little player, you just have to be smarter on the ice and fight wherever you set foot. But that doesn’t worry me too much. ”

Cole Caufield gets involved

Immediately after the selection of Sean Farrell, Cole Caufield went there with a publication very revealing of the admiration he has for his fellow American: “Steal” (flight), he tweeted, taking care to put Farrell’s face prominently.

And Caufield speaks knowingly, since the two men played together for the United States Under-18 team in 2018-19 and in the Under-17 the year before.

Farrell appreciated the gesture of his former teammate.

“What a beautiful gesture on his part! He also wrote to me just after the CH drafted me. It’s good to hear this from a player like Cole. All I want is to live up to that tweet and one day become an important Habs player. ”

Great ambitions

Farrell’s last sentence served as a stimulus to the author of his lines, who then asked him where he found himself among the CH’s huge bank of hope.

Does he really think he can one day become a catalyst in Montreal?

“I want to be an impactful offensive player for the Canadiens. I know that in order to reach the NHL, I will have to polish my defensive game. But I am really confident that one day I will be able to become a good game maker in Montreal. I wish I could use my greatest strength (his vision for the game) to help the Canadiens. ”

And the rest?

In the short term, Sean Farrell still has no idea where he will play this season. Whether it’s with the Chicago Steel in the USHL or with Harvard University in the NCAA, his goal remains the same.

“I want to contribute offensively no matter where I play. I also want to be an example for my teammates and work hard no matter the circumstances and the challenges that lie ahead. ”

These are words that Canadian leaders (and supporters) will certainly not hate reading …

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