Terrible News Confirmed For Enforcer Arber Xhekaj

Published December 4, 2023 at 6:48 PM

Today the Montreal Canadiens had to deliver some unfortunate news to Arber Xhekaj regarding his future.

Xhekaj Given Terrible News

Multiple sources have confirmed that defenseman Arber Xhekaj has been sent down to the AHL by the Montreal Canadiens.

Les Canadiens ont retiré le nom d'Arber Xhekaj de la liste des blessés et ont cédé le défenseur au Rocket de Laval.

The Canadiens have activated Arber Xhekaj off IR and loaned him to the Laval Rocket.

In a shocking move, Xhekaj will now play the first AHL games of his career after struggling in his time in the big leagues this year. As of now, this is not a conditioning stint but a true re-assignment. One source believes it could be short-lived.

Xhekaj doesn't need waivers to go down and the Canadiens need a roster spot for guys playing tonight. We'll see what happens. He will report to Rocket tomorrow, say the Canadiens. Perhaps he does what's akin to a conditioning stint with them until he returns.

While some believe this is just a conditioning stint other sources are not so convinced that Xhekaj's path back to the NHL will be a quick one.

Former Canadiens Player Believes Xhekaj Will Be Sent Down Long-Term

According to former Canadiens enforcer Georges Laraque, the demotion of Arber Xhekaj could be a season-long one. Laraque reports stories of a problem between Xhekaj and head coach Martin St. Louis after St. Louis ripped into Xhekaj for being too aggressive.

Interesting story from @GeorgesLaraque: he says MSL apparently ripped into Xhekaj after an L for being too aggressive and since then, Xhekaj has changed his game out of fear of being left out

He then says that he wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't finish the year in Montreal

If this rumor and story is true it calls into question the future of Xhekaj in Montreal. If St. Louis takes issue with the way Xhekaj plays things could go off the rails quickly. Xhekaj is known for his physicality and aggressiveness taking that away makes him an entirely different player.

Once Xhekaj begins playing again it will be interesting to note his style. If he plays differently then there could be some truth to these stories. He could also play top pair minutes and be back in a few days only time will be able to tell.

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December 4   |   93 answers
Terrible News Confirmed For Enforcer Arber Xhekaj

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