Steady Eddie stands on Canadiens blue line – –

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Steady Eddie stands on Canadiens blue line – –


The Canadiens’ playoff race gave the dad of Joel Edmundson, a longtime Canadiens fan fighting lung cancer, a boost.

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Eddie stable.

The nickname sounds good and it’s simple, just like Joel Edmundson’s game.

“I think he’s a guy who knows his style of play, the way he plays, what works for him,” the Canadiens’ Jeff Petry said recently of his regular partner in defense. “Night and night, that’s what he brings. He’s an easy guy to play with. You know where he’s gonna be, what he’s gonna do. He’s tough with the puck, he makes a good first pass. So all of these things are his recipe for consistency and success. He’s a nice guy and an easy guy to play with.

Steady Eddie has been the Canadiens’ most stable defenseman this year, finishing the regular season with 3-10-13 totals in 55 games and a plus-28 rating averaging 20:03 ice time. His plus / minus differential was by far the best among the Canadiens and placed fifth in the NHL. Joël Armia had the second best plus / minus among the Canadiens with a plus-10 differential and Petry placed second among the Montreal defensemen with a plus-6 differential.

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Over / under is a stat that often has to be taken with a big grain of salt, but Edmundson has been a minus player in just 13 games this season. It’s impressive. He played an even bigger role in the playoffs as his average ice time jumped to 22:18 with 0-3-3 and one plus-1 totals in 11 games.

Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin acquired Edmundson from the Carolina Hurricanes last September in exchange for a fifth-round pick in the NHL draft last year, then signed the 27-year-old to a contract. four-year fund of US $ 14 million. Edmundson is one of six players with Stanley Cup rings that Bergevin has added to the roster this season, along with Tyler Toffoli, Corey Perry, Eric Staal, Jake Allen and Michael Frolik.

As COVID-19 restrictions begin to loosen in Montreal and 2,500 fans are allowed to return to the Bell Center, Edmundson is starting to get his first real taste of what playing for the Canadiens really looks like.

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“It was great, I would say, last month,” he said after the Canadiens practice Thursday in Brossard. “In a way, I was finally able to discover what Montreal is and I loved it so far. It was awesome. We were locked up for most of the year so I didn’t really get to experience it. But now that the weather is nice and that we are in the orange zone, it’s fine. Just go out for a walk and enjoy it. It’s a beautiful city.

It’s a shame that Edmundson’s father, Bob, couldn’t have enjoyed it with him. Edmundson is from Brandon, Manitoba, and his father has been a lifelong Canadiens fan. Edmundson spoke last December about how much his arrival in the Habs meant to his dad, who is battling lung cancer.

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“My dad is going through a tough time right now,” Edmundson said in an article posted on the NHLPA website. “Right before I got into the playoff bubble (last year), I found out he had lung cancer. Being able to share the news that I was traded to Montreal – it was always his favorite team – it brought me back to my childhood at home, and in his office all the walls are painted in the colors of the Canadiens. He has all these Habs memories everywhere. He is therefore obviously delighted that I am playing with Montreal and that I have signed a contract with a good duration. Me going to Montreal, that put him on top. It has been exciting for us.

Edmundson was fortunate enough to visit his parents for an hour when the Canadians were in Winnipeg for the North Division final, in which they swept the Jets in four games. He said the Canadiens’ playoff race was a good one for his dad.

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“Just seeing them in person was great,” he said. “He cheered me up, his, and every time I get to see them it’s awesome. They listen to every game. They’ve got the whole city buzzing about the Habs right now, so that was fun. They just got their second dose (of the COVID-19 vaccine), so hopefully they can get out here soon. “

Edmundson said this Habs team reminds him in some ways of the St. Louis Blues team he was a part of in 2019, when they won the Stanley Cup with their tight playing style and the adversity they faced. they had to overcome. The Blues were last in the NHL’s overall standings on Jan. 3, the year they won the Cup.

“I think adversity is good sometimes,” said Edmundson. “You just have to use it in a positive way. … When you go through difficult times, it makes the whole team stronger.

“(Head coach Dominique Ducharme) always says that we quote our shoes, we get ready for the dance, and now that we’re here our shoes are polished. So we are ready to play.

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