I mentioned (twice) last week that Greg Pateryn was in the mix for the Montréal Canadiens' 6th and 7th defenseman spots... well the Habs sent him to their AHL affiliate Hamilton Bulldogs yesterday. Whereas last year, the team lacked right-handed shots on defense, it's the polar opposite this season, what with P.K. Subban, Tom Gilbert and Mike Weaver nearly guaranteed spots on the right side to begin the year.
With his steady play in both the AHL the past few years and every time he was called up, as well as in this current pre-season, Pateryn has all but been assured he will be the first blue-liner to get a call back up should the need arise.
I intended to write him last year but didn't; surely I will this season. He barely turned 24, he should be able to stick in the NHL for a decade or so of good, quiet, steady play. At 6'3'' and 220 pounds, he's strong and physical, and positions himself well. On an off night, though, because he plays a low-key game and stays on the back end, he can look pretty bad - luckily those don't occur very often.
And so, the former Toronto Maple Leafs draft pick (128th overall in 2008) and University Of Michigan Wolverines alternate captain takes his rightful place, wearing #64 in my Habs Numbers Project, with this 2013-14 Prizm card, #359 of the set by Panini, his Rookie Card (part of last year's Dual Rookie Class):