There were a lot of people present at the Bell Center for the second and last team photo of the Montreal Canadiens this season.

There was a crowd on Monday, since the majority of the ten injured players were present, in addition to the twenty healthy.

A photo was also taken with the players’ family members.

It was an opportunity to have a good time with teammates and to tease each other a little.

“Most of the guys were making jokes about Cole’s (Caufield) position,” captain Nick Suzuki said. He likes to be in the middle, but he can’t find himself between Andy (Josh Anderson) and Savy (David Savard). It sounds a little crazy, but it’s a laugh,” Suzuki said.

“Yippee!” also came for the photo, but without his sweater. It made everyone laugh, even though we try to look serious in the photos,” he added.

Among the injured present was Paul Byron. Although he did not play all season due to hip problems, Byron remained in the team entourage throughout the winter.

“He still shows up every day for work, even though there’s not much light at the end of the tunnel for him,” goaltender Jake Allen said. That says a lot about who he is. He has the team at heart. »

“He was a big help to me in my first seasons in the league and a lot of guys still go to him for advice,” Suzuki said. He has worked very hard to get this far and he is a good example to have around the team.

“It’s also good that he didn’t stay isolated even though he’s injured. »

Head coach Martin St-Louis often talked about culture during the season. Byron is one of the people who help develop good habits with the Habs.

“Pauly is a pro,” St-Louis insisted. He helps the guys in the locker room. Sometimes I’ll ask her for her opinion. You can trust him on a lot of things. His experience cannot be bought.

“It’s sad that he didn’t play this season, but I’m glad he stayed in the team entourage. »

Players don’t do much soul-searching when they look at their old team photos, Allen said.

“For me, I think mostly about the guys I played with, the memories we made together on the ice, but also off it,” Allen said. And here, it’s special to wear this uniform. »

Rafaël Harvey-Pinard admitted that it was special for him to take a first team photo with the Canadian.

And who knows? Maybe in a few years, players or fans who will look at this photo will be able to tell themselves that it was year 1 of a process that brought the Canadiens back among the best teams in the NHL.

“There are so many important pieces of the puzzle in this photo,” Allen admitted. Yes, many are not playing due to injury!

“But when we look at it in a few years, we can tell ourselves that there were already several important team players in this group,” he concluded.