Will the Habs go after Joel Champagne from the Quebec Remparts?

Last summer the Toronto Maple Leafs continued their legacy of giving up on a prospect by relinquishing their rights to LaSalle native Joel Champagne from the Quebec league. At 6’4″ and 220lbs, the barely 21 year old Quebec Remparts star who has consistently put up points in his tenure in the QMJHL is without a contract before even getting a chance at the next level, just fresh off a great performance during the 2009-2010 playoffs in the juniors. The Montreal Canadiens who have had a history of signing un-drafted/un-signed players have a couple of smaller forwards in their Hamilton Bulldogs AHL affiliate but are lacking the size and strength that Champagne brings to the game. After watching last weeks game against the Boston Bruins, many realize it has been many years that the Montreal Canadiens have had a larger power forward to control the game when playing against physically challenging teams. A noticeably improved player with good face-off skills and smart with staying out of the penalty box (and avoiding stupid penalties), Joel Champagne now finds himself in the top 8 scoring in the whole QMJHL.

Canadiens fans salivate over the ability to bring a Vincent Lecavalier type player to the Bell Centre but forget that sometimes, it can be easier than they think. There is a great deal to be said of a player that Patrick Roy (the owner of the Quebec Remparts) will trade for in the Quebec league. With some promising young talent on the Montreal Canadiens (present and future), there still is the need for the big centre that they haven’t had since the likes of Jean Beliveau. That presence is only one quick signing away and his name is Joel Champagne….


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