When will we see Evgenii Dadonov again? | The Press

(St. Louis) The Canadian obtained Evgenii Dadonov against the albatross contract of an inactive player, Shea Weber. Already, it was a big red flag. Our expectations were at the floor. But there, we have reached the third basement, and we are approaching the bedrock.

In eight games, Dadonov produced nothing. No goal. No pass. No points. For an attacking winger paid $5 million, that’s unacceptable. The more the season progresses, the worse it is. For 10 days, his playing time has melted like a snowman in the West Indies.

Evgenii Dadonov playing time

  • October 20: 16:54
  • October 22: 13 min 8 sec
  • October 25: 12:37
  • October 27: 11:55
  • October 29: 0:00

Saturday, against the St. Louis Blues, Dadonov did not even put on the uniform. Sunday, like all the other Habs players, he took advantage of a day off. And Monday…

On Monday, Dadonov took the bus with his teammates to an arena in third ring St. Louis. Except he didn’t put on the skates for practice. Treatment day, the Canadian informed us during the session. An astonishing announcement, considering its previous 48 hours.

“Dadonov, are these really therapeutic treatments? asked Luc Gélinas, of RDS, to Martin St-Louis.

« Yes, that’s what I was told, » replied the head coach of the Canadian.

Jonathan Bernier, of Montreal Journal, followed up with a follow-up question. St-Louis got stuck. « Listen to them boys, he was not on the ice today. Chantal [Machabée] told you. Stop. »

It was therefore not known whether Dadonov was injured in the upper, middle or lower body. Or even if he was hurt at all. But I guess, from the irritated tone of Martin St-Louis, that the head coach of the Canadiens did not appreciate the distraction caused by the absence of his veteran. The coaches hate noise, speculation and rumors. Especially after two great victories on the road, at the heart of a long journey.

On the other hand, notwithstanding his state of health, I would understand Dadonov to be dissatisfied with his fate in Montreal. It’s painful for a veteran to be left out. Especially on a team that finished last in the NHL the previous season. It is a sign that the end is near.

However, Dadonov does not deserve to be established. It does not produce with equal forces. He hardly plays on the power play. And shorthanded, a new role for him, he found himself on the ice for three opposing goals, in just 17 minutes.

Martin St-Louis has 15 healthy forwards at his disposal. If he wants to make changes, he has better options than Dadonov. Don’t be surprised if Jonathan Drouin returns to training before Evgenii Dadonov. Despite his withdrawal from the lineup against the Blues, the Quebec forward continues to act as a good soldier.

« I have a good attitude, » he says. I work hard. I do my things. We have a group with a lot of attackers. There are nights when it will be me [qui sera laissé de côté]. I can’t control this. It’s up to me to be present in training and to show a good attitude, to get back into the line-up as quickly as possible. »

« It’s easier to experience it as a veteran than as a rookie, » he added. In his first season in the NHL, Jonathan Drouin had been cut 12 times. “As a rookie, you don’t really know what to expect. You don’t know why, but sometimes it’s harder to talk to the coach. You are 18, 19 years old. You are a little more embarrassed. Now I have a great relationship with Martin. We had a conversation. There wasn’t really a reason [spécifique à mon retrait]. It was because of a surplus of forwards. »

All coaches appreciate entrenched veterans who take the hit. who fall into line. Which do not cause distraction. Martin St-Louis also acknowledged on Monday that it is part of his expectations of his reservists.

“Of course, when a player is not playing, the attitude is important. Work ethic is important. These are things that come into play. [Ces joueurs] have to take responsibility to get back in a game. So far I have this. »

Moreover, Martin St-Louis appreciated the contribution of Joel Armia and Juraj Slafkovsky, both reinstated against the Blues on Saturday night. He was particularly complimentary towards the Slovak rookie.

“There is a big evolution on the side of his commitment,” he said.

“To be useful in the National League, to be able to produce, it takes more than speed, hands and a shot. You have to understand the game a little. We try to teach him the game. It’s normal that he didn’t get the start he would have [souhaité], even in execution. But the progress is superb. At that age, they are sponges. He’s a sponge right now. »

And he more than deserves his place in the line-up than Evgenii Dadonov.

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