Almost two months later, here is Rafaël Harvey-Pinard again. The small forward will make his return to play Thursday evening at the Bell Center when the San José Sharks visit.

Harvey-Pinard had resumed training with his teammates for a few days and had even accompanied his teammates to Philadelphia for Wednesday’s game, in order to practice with them in the morning.

Number 49 fell in combat on November 14, hit in the lower body. In 13 games, he had four assists and showed a differential of 1. Martin St-Louis used him on average 13:9 per game.

“It’s like my season started again today. I take it as the first match of the season, said the young man. I arrive with confidence, I want to play my way and I’m not worried about the attack, it will come by working hard and respecting my identity. »

His role on Thursday remains uncertain. He said he does not know who he will play with, and the Canadiens head coach, Martin St-Louis, has not met the media.

The return of Harvey-Pinard could help the penalty kill, if this mission is entrusted to him. He is in fact ranked 2nd among the team’s attackers for the ratio of goals scored by the opponent when playing shorthanded. According to Natural Stat Trick, rivals score 8.97 goals per 60 minutes when Harvey-Pinard plays at a disadvantage, a better ratio than Jake Evans (9.72), Sean Monahan (10.99) and Nick Suzuki (16.22). Only Joel Armia (8.33) has a better record.

This was his second absence of the season. On November 2, in Arizona, he was injured for the first time and left the match, before missing the next three games. He then returned to play three matches.

Harvey-Pinard remained evasive as to whether it was the same injury. “Even for me, it’s blurry. I’m used to playing with small injuries, so I wanted to come back to the game. I don’t know when the more serious injury happened, but we forget that, we put that aside. The important thing is today. »

Emil Heineman will be left aside to make room for Harvey-Pinard, on a day where the Swedish diaspora of the CH is in the spotlight with the acquisition of Filip Cederqvist in return for later compensation.