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NHL Montreal Canadiens

Montreal Canadiens: 5 Bold Predictions For 2014-15 Season

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Montreal Canadiens: 5 Bold Predictions For 2014-15 Season

Montreal Canadiens Fans
Jean-Yves Ahern - USA TODAY Sports

As always, expectations for Le Bleu, Blanc et Rouge are sky-high; well, in hockey-crazed Montreal they are.

The Canadiens were oh-so-close to sipping from Lord Stanley's cup in 2014, and as a new season lurks on the horizon, we're about to see just how good Les Habitants can be.

5. The Habs vs. Bruins Rivalry Will be as Intense as Ever

Zdeno Chara Boston Bruins
Eric Bolte - USA TODAY Sports

5. The Habs vs. Bruins Rivalry Will be as Intense as Ever

Zdeno Chara Boston Bruins
Eric Bolte - USA TODAY Sports

If there's a more intense rivalry in the NHL, it's escaped my knowledge. The Canadiens and Boston Bruins have been going at it since 1924, and after the way last year ended, the rivalry promises to be just as nasty as it has always been.

Rumor has it that Milan Lucic said some not-so-nice things to a few members of the Canadiens, which may or may not have included mutterings of homicide.

Ok, maybe the rivalry will be even nastier this year.

4. P.A. Parenteau Scores 20 Goals

P.A. Parenteau Colorado Avalanche
Bruce Fedyck - USA TODAY Sports

4. P.A. Parenteau Scores 20 Goals

P.A. Parenteau Colorado Avalanche
Bruce Fedyck - USA TODAY Sports

This offseason, the Canadiens' brass shipped the under-producing, overpaid Daniel Briere to the Colorado Avalanche for the underused, potentially appropriately-paid P.A. Parenteau.

The Canadiens need offense -- who doesn't? -- and the addition of Parenteau should work out nicely. He's slated to skate alongside Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais, and if Parenteau can stay healthy, he'll twist the twine at least 20 times this season.

3. Four Leaders Won't be as Good as One True Leader

Tomas Plekanec Montreal Canadiens
Jean-Yves Ahern - USA TODAY Sports

3. Four Leaders Won't be as Good as One True Leader

Tomas Plekanec Montreal Canadiens
Jean-Yves Ahern - USA TODAY Sports

With the loss of Brian Gionta, the Canadiens were left without a captain for the first time since Saku Koivu opted for the sun and sand of California over the snow and bitter cold of Montreal. Instead of naming a successor to Gionta, the Habs elected four alternate captains. Are the Canadiens up to something? No.

Why isn't every other NHL team doing the same thing? Because it doesn't work.

2. Rene Bourque Won't Change

Rene Bourque Montreal Canadiens
Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports

2. Rene Bourque Won't Change

Rene Bourque Montreal Canadiens
Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports

Rene Bourque possesses the tools of an atypical power forward -- he's big (6-foot-2, 213-pounds), he's skilled, and he has a nose for the net. Sometimes, during the 2014 NHL playoffs for example, he's the most visible player on the ice. More often than not, his lack of effort makes you forget he's even in the building.

Last year, no single player drew the ire of Canadiens' fans more than Bourque.

Deja vu -- it's a french term, right?

1. Subban Flirts with Norris Trophy and the Canadiens Make Playoffs

P.K. Subban Montreal Canadiens
Timothy T. Ludwig - USA TODAY Sports

1. Subban Flirts with Norris Trophy and the Canadiens Make Playoffs

P.K. Subban Montreal Canadiens
Timothy T. Ludwig - USA TODAY Sports

Armed with an eight-year, $72M deal, P.K. Subban has something to prove, which is weird to say about a former Norris Trophy winner. But when big money is put on the table, what he's done in the past doesn't matter.

A virtual lock for 50 points, Subban will help the Canadiens reach the playoffs where, as always, they'll capitalize on their opponent's mistakes and injuries until their luck runs out.

Lately, that's just the Canadiens way.

Jeff Pearlman is a writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.