Corey Perry was pretty close to not even being around for this Montreal Canadiens postseason run. The veteran forward’s agent Pat Morris told Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic that he personally called three teams when Perry was placed on waivers at the beginning of the season, asking them not to put in a claim and let him stay with Montreal. Two of those teams apparently told Morris they would have if he hadn’t called, but decided to “respect his career” and leave him with the Canadiens.
Perry ended up clearing, giving the Canadiens flexibility to bounce him back and forth from taxi squad to active roster, saving cap space in the process. He ended up playing in 49 regular season games and became one of the team’s most important forwards, playing a huge role in the postseason. The 36-year-old has three goals and eight points in 15 playoff games, including the game-winner in game seven against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
- Chandler Stephenson is a game-time decision for the Vegas Golden Knights tonight against Perry and the Canadiens. The 27-year-old has developed into a top-line center with the Golden Knights this season, scoring 35 points in 51 regular season games, usually skating between Mark Stone and Max Pacioretty. Though he has failed to score a goal in 14 playoff games so far, he does have six points and has been excellent in the faceoff circle. Stephenson of course won the Stanley Cup with the Washington Capitals in 2018 (defeating the Golden Knights) and would be a welcome addition to the lineup for this evening’s match.
- Though there had been some speculation that Adam Fantilli could leave the USHL next season, the top prospect will be back with the Chicago Steel for 2021-22 according to Corey Pronman of The Athletic. The 16-year-old is not eligible for the NHL draft until 2023 but is already turning heads after a 36-point campaign with Chicago this season. His eight goals in the playoffs were enough to Clark Cup MVP, helping the Steel secure the trophy for the second time. Fantilli, who is from Nobleton, Ontario, was actually drafted 18th overall by the Saginaw Spirit of the OHL in 2020 but would not be eligible for the NCAA if he decided to play in the CHL.