Now that Ryan O'Byrne will join Andrei Markov on the sidelines for the next six weeks, you can expect speculation to mount on who the Canadiens will want to bring in to get through this early-season blow to their defence.
Free agent Marc-André Bergeron's agent says he's had two discussions with Habs assistant GM Julien BriseBois, and seeing as Bergeron is an effective power play quarterback he makes perfect sense to bring in as a stop gap measure to replace Markov, right?
Wrong. If you're going to bring in Bergeron, may as well simply play Yannick Weber instead, because both of them will make mistakes in their own end. If you have to live with defensive errors, I think you'd rather they come from a prized prospect rather than an out-of-work, one-dimensional veteran. If Weber - who was finally summoned to Calgary today - doesn't work out, then call up Mathieu Carle and give him a shot. Then you can try P.K. Subban.
The team finally has an excuse to use some of these promising young defencemen and see if they measure up to NHL competition, rather than simply spending an eternity evaluating them in the AHL. Francois Beauchemin was left to rot in the AHL forever, and how did that work out? How about Ron Hainsey?
While the aforementioned youngsters will get the most attention, I wouldn't be surprised to see Andre Benoit called up should Weber falter. He played the past two years in Europe and excelled, notching 38 points in 54 with Tappara Tempere in Finland two years ago and 20 points with Sodertalje, the worst team in the Swedish Elite League last year.
But in a year where so many new faces have worked pretty hard to build some chemistry the past several weeks, is it really worth it to mess with whatever chemistry they've created by bringing in another personality? I guess a former player wouldn't pose that problem quite as much, but I find this talk of bringing back Patrice Brisebois to be preposterous.