Habs’ Draft Pick Shasby Turning Heads

By Chris Boucher
Matt Shasby was the Canadiens’ 5th round pick, 150th overall in the
1999 NHL Entry Draft. He’s built in a similar mold to three other Habs’
draft picks. Ron Hainsey, Chris Dyment, and Ryan Glenn. All of who play
in the US College ranks. Although Shasby’s name has not been mentioned
in the same breath as Hainsey and Dyment, his early season success is
beginning to merit some attention.

Through 4 games Shasby has already doubled his goal output of a year
ago. In fact, he scored more goals in an October 14th game against
Michigan (2) than he did the entire 99-00 season. After 6 games he has 2
goals and 2 assists, compared to 1 goal and 8 assists in 32 games last

As a 17 year-old he was selected to be a member of the USA Hockey
Development Program. This is a program which has turned out defensemen
Brooks Orpik, David Tanabe, and Doug Janik. Unfortunately Shasby had
already committed to Lincoln of the USHL. This decision likely slowed
down his development, as he missed out on some of the best coaching
available in the US, and a possible trip to the World Junior

Matt attended a Pro Conditioning camp in Minnesota during the
off-season. This camp allowed Matt the opportunity to develop a
conditioning program to increase his strength, and push his weight up to
196 Lbs.

Earlier this season he was selected as the top defenseman in the Nissan
Classic Hockey Tournament, which took place the weekend of October 13th.
He was also named to the All-Tournament team; An incredible achievement
considering the talent in the tournament, and the fact that his team
lost both games.

Matt’s sophomore season has allowed him the opportunity to take on more
responsibility both on offense and on defense. He is averaging close to
30 minutes a game, and is on both the number one powerplay , and penalty
killing units.

Although he has already begun to climb the Canadiens’ depth chart,
Shasby will likely climb even higher if he continues to develop at his
current pace. His early season success indicates a much higher up-side
than even the most optimistic scouts first realized. An entire season at
his current pace could see Shasby not only being mentioned in the same
breath as Hainsey and Dyment, but being mentioned first.