Friday, June 20, 2008

Habs Review 2007-08:

Matt D'Agostini

The numbers

1 GP: 0 G, 0 A, 0 Pts, 2 PIM, E, 0 Shots

Career best year
Rookie (same as above)

Plays of the game: 0

Game pucks: 0

Domes: 0

3 Star selections: 0

The story

Where he started the season
After putting up decent numbers in Hamilton in 2006-07 (49 Pts/63 Games) one would have to think that the Habs would give this kid a look this past season. Another positive for him was that his play in Hamilton's Calder Cup run was very good as he posted 13 playoff points. He was given every chance to make the team in October, but was simply not good enough to crack the squad. Back in September, we summed it up quite well, surprisingly, when we said this:
Those with a realistic chance (in my opinion) of a game or two this year, and full NHL seasons on their horizons include:

5) Matt D'Agostini – could break through, but probably needs another season to impress.
He isn't a small guy, but at 6'0" he isn't huge either. He is definitely a top-2 line player and with the talent we have there it was always going to be a long shot. The message was clear, however: play well in Hamilton and you will earn your chance with the Habs.

The season
Hamilton wasn't able to repeat its team success of last year, but some players, like D'Agostini, had good individual campains. He posted 53 points and when it was quite obvious that the 'Dogs would miss the playoffs he was Montreal bound for his shot. He featured in just one game with the big club and I wouldn't really say that he seized his chance. Unlike other Hamiton call-ups, Matt was a non-factor in his game and even took a silly tripping penalty on one of his first shifts. He did, however, stick around with the team throughout the playoffs, but never suited up again.

D'Agostini by the numbers: N/A

Lions' links on
Canadiens rookie camp

Grade: D

This grade is for his play with the Habs, not with Hamilton. He has actually shown fairly good progress on the farm and I think is still very much in the Habs' plans. It is normal to not make an impact in your first game in the NHL, but it was a shame for Matt that so many other Habs prospects did make such big impacts all season long.

Where we'd have him next season
He is still young and is still learning. He was quite popular with Habs fans this year during the preseason and during his call-up which of course can never hurt. I am positive that the average Habs fan assumes that the Ontario native is French - ah, memories of Rivet. It will be a battle for him to become an NHL regular, but if he wins the battle I am sure he will fit in well with this young group of Habs.

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