Cana­di­ens kick Streit to curb

The London Free Press - - SPORTS -

Vet­eran de­fence­man Mark Streit sud­denly is the odd man out in the Mon­treal Cana­di­ens on­go­ing blue­line shuffle.

The Cana­di­ens placed the 39-year-old on waivers Thurs­day, three months af­ter sign­ing him to a one-year $700,000 con­tract. Streit won a Stan­ley Cup with Pitts­burgh last sea­son.

The Cana­di­ens signed Streit in free agency to re­stock their de­pleted group of de­fence­man. An­drei Markov left to play in his na­tive Rus­sia, Alexei Emelin was claimed in the NHL ex­pan­sion draft and Nathan Beaulieu was traded to Buf­falo.

Streit had no points in play­ing Mon­treal’s first two games, be­fore be­ing benched the next two in favour of Bran­don David­son, who was ac­quired in a trade with Ed­mon­ton last sea­son. The Cana­di­ens re­formed de­fen­sive group also in­cludes free agent ad­di­tion Karl Alzner and rookie Vic­tor Mete.

Cana­di­ens coach Claude Julien pre­vi­ously said pa­tience was re­quired to al­low the play­ers a chance to de­velop.

“We’re go­ing to be fine,” Julien said fol­low­ing a 6-1 loss at Wash­ing­ton last week­end. “A lot of new faces back there and guys are just try­ing to get used to do­ing the right things and be­ing in sync with each other.”

This is Streit’s sec­ond stint with Mon­treal af­ter spend­ing his first three NHL sea­sons with the Cana­di­ens. He’s topped 40 points in six of 11 sea­sons and over­all has 96 goals and 338 as­sists in 786 games.

The Cana­di­ens have been outscored 11-2 in los­ing three straight since a sea­son-open­ing 3-2 shootout win at Buf­falo.

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