P.A. Parenteau turning the page with Habs

MONTREAL -- Patrick Roy didn't sound like he was trying to stir the pot, but rather he seemed to matter-of-factly be explaining why last summer's trade between his Colorado Avalanche and Montreal Canadiens might just work out nicely for both teams.

But within his self-analysis of the P.A. Parenteau-Daniel Briere trade Thursday morning, the Avalanche head coach and executive inadvertently (or not?) made a comment that wasn't overly well-received by Parenteau.

"You want players that are happy," Roy told a media scrum when asked about the trade. "I’m not saying P.A. wasn't happy with us. I'm saying that this year, I mean, it would have been tough for him to play on the top two lines. I think he would have been unhappy with us. I believe this trade will serve him very well because he can play on the top two lines with Montreal and play on the power play. He's a very good hockey player, and I'm sure the people in Montreal will love him."

Hours later in the Habs' dressing room following a 3-2 preseason OT win over the Avs, Parenteau was asked about the "top-two lines" comment from Roy.

"If you ask me, I think I would have had my place in the top six in Colorado, but he's the coach and he makes the decisions in Colorado," Parenteau said in French. "So it is what it is."

Then he turned the page. Because that's exactly what he's trying to do.

"Un mal pour un bien," Parenteau said, French for "a blessing in disguise."

It's worked out just fine for him, so for that, he's grateful.

He's playing for the team he grew up cheering for and has begun the preseason on the top line with David Desharnais and Max Pacioretty. Hence the smile on his face Thursday night.

"I've come home at 31, I'm playing with David and Patch, there's nothing much better than that. I'm very happy," said Parenteau.

He's hungry, motivated, determined to prove something this season.

"Yes, after a tough year with the injury and not getting as much ice time as I wanted, it's a season I want to forget," he said. "I'm just looking forward now. Things are looking up here."

Parenteau scored 32 goals in 103 games over two seasons in Colorado, so that's a 25-goal pace over 82 games.

He's getting a chance with the Habs to do just that -- score goals. It's a team that struggled at times last season to score at even strength, so the hope here is that Parenteau finds his stride wearing Habs colors.

"He's a natural goal scorer. I think it's worth a try for sure by Montreal," said an NHL scout from a rival team watching Thursday's game at the Bell Centre. "They need goals. He's got a great shot, a nose for the net. He's not very big and isn't very physical, and a bit of a liability defensively at times. But scoring goals is what he can do. Worth a look for them, for sure. I think he'll be a good fit for them."

Now the goal for Parenteau is to find his groove with his new linemates as soon as possible.

During an overtime play on Thursday night, Desharnais was down low and tried to feed Parenteau across the slot, except the pass went left while Parenteau went right. So the puck went sliding by.

"I went the other way, that's a question of chemistry," Parenteau said. "It’s about getting used to each other. I'm not used to playing with a center who passes the puck as much as him. I have to learn to be more patient with him and stay in my spot more."

Pacioretty, whose chemistry last season with Desharnais propelled both to great years, welcomes the addition.

"He's a dual-threat option," Pacioretty said of the newcomer. "Everybody knows what me and David are up to when we’re out there, but having P.A. being able to make plays and put the puck in the net makes our line way more dangerous."

The chemistry off the ice is already there. Turns out even though they had never played together before, Parenteau said he and Desharnais met at a golf tournament years ago and became buddies, spending time together each summer. So, to be teammates now for the first time, and linemates on top of it, is the icing on the cake.

"Honestly, I'm just so excited about this year," Parenteau said. "I'm feeling confident, and I think this is going to be a good fit."

A top-six forward fit, that is.