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Norris Memorial Trophy-winning defenseman P.K. Subban.
As mentioned previously, in 2013 the Habs enjoyed a 20.7 percent success rate on the power play. Heading into 2013-14, that success seems destined to remain intact if not eclipsed.
A defensive tandem of Andrei Markov (whose offensive production, at least, isn’t slowing down) and Norris Memorial Trophy winner P.K. Subban should be enough to convince most skeptics to that effect.
The two led the team in power-play scoring with 23 and 26 points respectively, with Subban trailing only Washington Capitals teammates Alexander Ovechkin and Mike Ribeiro (27 points each) league-wide in that category.
While Michael Ryder’s six goals and 11 points on the power play will be missed, Daniel Briere, a pure offensive threat if there ever was one, looks to be an outright superior replacement.
Having scored 102 career goals on the power play, he’s no stranger to banging home rebounds off shots from the point and would theoretically fit right in by the side of the net. Of course, his 5’10”, 179-pound frame could theoretically fit just about anywhere, but he knows what to do with the puck, is what I’m saying.
In 2013, Montreal got flak for enjoying a league-high 329:15 in total power-play time (just less than half a game more than the second-place Detroit Red Wings). However, one must not forget that the Habs play a puck-possession game and are bound to get their fair share of calls as a result.
As such, look for the Habs to draw a lot of chances once again, and, more importantly, make good on a great deal of them.