Claude Julie took a stand on the Montreal Canadiens by making Karl Alzner and Tomas Plekanec healthy scratches, and it’s a mystery as to how long it lasts.
It wasn’t the biggest surprise, but it still took many by surprise when the Montreal Canadiens chose to scratch both Karl Alzner and Tomas Plekanec. It’s definitely an easier pill to swallow for Plekanec than Alzner if you look at the circumstances of his contract.
The 35-year-old took a $2.25 million cap hit to return to Montreal after his short stint with the Toronto Maple Leafs after the trade deadline last season. But there was more to the deal. Plekanec also has five potential performance bonuses attached which will earn him an extra $225,000. Three of them are based on how many games Plekanec plays in starting at 30 and moving on to 50.
That seemed like a random throw in at first, but considering where things have played out, it seems like management foresaw a situation where the veteran would be surpassed. However, if Plekanec proved he had what it took to play every night, he’d benefit from the playing time and the extra cash.
The Alzner scratch came out of nowhere (kind of). The 30-year-old was looking to bounce back from a disappointing debut year with the Montreal Canadiens. Alzner had a new attitude, a new old number, and the drive to turn things around. But two games into the season and he hasn’t gotten that opportunity to do so.
So the question is, how long will the Montreal Canadiens remain Plekanec and Alzner-less?