Head coach Martin St. Louis is using the Canadiens’ road trip to hold auditions and 20-year-old Justin Barron passed his first test in Sunday’s 3-2 shootout loss to New Jersey.

St. Louis said Barron, who was acquired from Colorado in the Artturi Lehkonen trade, made “a very good first impression.”

“He managed his game very well, just like he managed the puck, and he defended really well,” said St. Louis. “He earned his coach’s confidence.”

That’s why Barron joined Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield to start the overtime period.

“I know he’s an attacking player and it was an opportunity for him to see a lot of ice with a lot of space,” said St. Louis. “He did a good job.”

“It was really special,” said Barron, a Halifax native who was the Avalanche’s first-round draft choice in 2020 (No. 25 overall).

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