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Why Nick Suzuki is the Canadiens Future

Montreal Canadiens 2023-24

Canadiens Nick Suzuki has shone this season. His breakout campaign which already has him besting career highs in goals and points, has fans excited for his future. Suzuki is blossoming into the perfect number-one centre for the Montreal Canadiens. Let’s take a look at the evolution of Nick Suzuki.

Nick Suzuki

Nick Suzuki has been a member of the Canadiens organization since 2018 when he was acquired from the Vegas Golden Knights. Suzuki was named captain of the team in 2022.  During his time in Montreal, Suzuki has been a consistent 60-point player. Last season he posted career highs of 26 goals and 66 points. He has totaled 276 points in 362 games for the Canadiens over five seasons.

Suzuki’s production has always been solid and consistent, especially for a young developing player. Not to mention one that has to carry the burden of being a captain in the pressure cooker that is Montreal. However, many have been waiting for Suzuki to take that next step in his play and join the elite. This leads us to the current campaign.

Suzuki’s 2023-24 Season

This season, Canadiens Nick Suzuki has taken that next step in his development. There have been many question marks about whether or not Suzuki is capable of being a number one centre on a contending team. This season, however, he has put those questions to rest. Suzuki’s 67 points in only 71 games have him at nearly a point-per-game pace. Assuming he hits the 70-point mark, he will be the first Hab to do so since Max Domi scored 72 in 2018-19.

Suzuki has found instant chemistry with young linemates Cole Caufield and Juraj Slafkovsky. The trio has combined for the bulk of the Canadiens goals this season and are poised to be one of the NHL’s top lines for years to come. Suzuki’s defensive game has also taken another step, even earning some mentions in Selke Trophy conversations. While he likely won’t win the trophy, earning mentions in the award at 24 years old is impressive in itself. A big part of Suzuki’s improved 200-foot game has been in the faceoff dot. This is an area where he is now operating at 53.5 percent. A 24-year-old, point-per-game, 200-foot player sure sounds like a number-one centre.

Future Outlook

At only 24 years old Nick Suzuki still has plenty of room to improve his all-around game. Playing as well as he has on a poor Canadiens team is impressive in its own right. If you couple this with all the pressures of being a young captain in the daunting market of Montreal, it bodes well for his future. Suzuki has shined in the role of captain in his first two seasons. His calm demeanour and lead-by-example style have reflected well on the Canadiens young team. Suzuki also has been an iron man for Montreal as he has the third-longest active streak in the NHL sitting at 362 games. This streak dates back to the 2019 season.

As far as the Montreal Canadiens future is concerned, expect Nick Suzuki to be at its forefront. He will be their Canadiens, captain, number one centre, and a big minute muncher for the next six years at least. He’s a guy who will be featured in every situation for Montreal and he can flourish in any role.  Suzuki is the guy that the Canadiens are building their franchise around and rightfully so.

Nick Suzuki is the perfect captain for this young Canadiens squad. When you account for his offensive breakout, two-way play, leadership abilities, and durability, it’s easy to see how Suzuki is the perfect player to usher the Habs into the next era. The Canadiens can rest easy knowing they have Suzuki locked up for the next six seasons at a reasonable $7.875 million cap hit.

Main photo: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports



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