• by RotoWire Staff | Special to CBSSports.com

    Montreal Canadiens' Nathan Beaulieu On third d-pairing

    Beaulieu had three blocked shots and two hits in 14:27 in Wednesday's season-opening win over Toronto.Beaulieu lined up on the third d-pairing along with Tom Gilbert, but could be a top-four defender before the end of the season. He rarely looks out of place.

  • Leads team in ice time

    News: Nathan Beaulieu played a team-high 23:37 in Saturday night's preseason finale against Ottawa. He had three assists, was plus-2, and logged 3:26 on the power play.
    Analysis: The Canadiens didn't suit up P.K. Subban or Andrei Markov, so there was plenty of time for Nathan Beaulieu. After practice Friday, head coach Michel Therrien lauded Beaulieu's maturity, but added the young defenseman needs to establish himself in the NHL and show that every game is important to him. Apparently, Beaulieu was listening.
  • Coach seeks improvement

    News: Nathan Beaulieu, who has developed well on Montreal's back line, still has room for improvement, according to head coach Michel Therrien, Hockey Inside Out reports.
    Analysis: Nathan Beaulieu, who signed a two-year extension this past summer, could be a top-four defender this season. He can use his size, skates well and has an offensive bent, but Therrien is looking for development in decision making -- things like when to jump into a play and when to hang back.
  • Habs' Beaulieu Inks Two-Year Extension

    News: Nathan Beaulieu signed a two-year, $2 million contract extension with the Canadiens on Saturday, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports.
    Analysis: Nathan Beaulieu managed to register eight assists and one goal in 64 games with the Canadiens this season. The 22-year-old defender began to see some time on the Habs' second power-play unit this season, and will likely spend the majority of his playing time as a part of the team's second defensive pairing next year.
  • Habs' Beaulieu Suffered Fractured Sternum

    News: Nathan Beaulieu suffered a fractured sternum in Game 3 against the Senators, the team revealed Thursday, Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette reports.
    Analysis: The team simply called it an "upper body injury" for the duration of the playoffs, but it caused Nathan Beaulieu to miss seven games. He returned to play two games against Tampa Bay in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, and it's unclear whether the injury will require offseason surgery.
  • Habs' Beaulieu Returns

    News: Nathan Beaulieu returned to the lineup Saturday after missing the Habs' previous seven games with an upper-body injury.
    Analysis: Nathan Beaulieu replaced Greg Pateryn in the lineup and had one shot on goal in 14:29 of ice time.
  • Habs' Beaulieu On Ice For Morning Skate

    News: Nathan Beaulieu (upper body) was on the ice for the Habs' morning skate on Saturday, John Lu of TSN Montreal reports.
    Analysis: It appears as though Nathan Beaulieu will be able to suit up for Saturday's Game 5 against the Lightning. The Habs should confirm his availability prior to puck drop on Saturday.
  • Habs' Beaulieu Practices Tuesday

    News: Nathan Beaulieu (upper body) took part in practice Tuesday for the Canadiens, Sportsnet.ca reports.
    Analysis: The Canadiens have already ruled Nathan Beaulieu out for the next two games of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series with the Lightning, but his return to practice could allow him to return as soon as Game 5. His progress will be monitored over the next several days.
  • Habs' Beaulieu Remains Sidelined

    News: Nathan Beaulieu (upper body) will miss at least the first four games of Montreal's Round 2 playoff series.
    Analysis: As a result, Greg Pateryn figures to remain in the Habs' blue line mix, with Nathan Beaulieu ruled out through Game 4 of the team's upcoming series against either Detroit or Tampa Bay, at a minimum.
  • Habs' Beaulieu Skates Wednesday

    News: Nathan Beaulieu skated on his own prior to Wednesday's practice, Jessica Rusnak of TSN Radio 690 reports.
    Analysis: The solo skate session last about one hour and amounted to Nathan Beaulieu's first on-ice activity since exiting Game 3 with the injury. It seems doubtful at this point that Beaulieu will be ready to play in Game 1 of the Canadiens' second-round series versus the winner of Wednesday's match between the Red Wings and Lightning, likely allowing Greg Pateryn to hold down a spot in the lineup.