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Jake Allen Extension Buys Montreal Canadiens Time

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Montreal Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens announced that they have agreed to a two-year contract extension with goaltender Jake Allen.

There were rumours that the Canadiens were in talks with their 32-year-old goaltender about an extension earlier in September and those talks have resulted in a two-year, $3.85M per annum extension that will keep Allen with the Canadiens through the 2024-2025 season.

Considering how barren the goaltending free agent market was this summer, the Canadiens did well to jump on signing Allen as quickly as they did. The veteran goaltender is the only viable option for a No. 1 goaltender in the organization, and the recent play of Samuel Montembeault and Cayden Primeau over the last year hasn’t convinced general manager Kent Hughes that there is a viable succession plan in-house.

The Canadiens are buying much more than two more years at a reasonable cap hit; they’re also buying themselves time in order to bring in a more sustainable successor to the goaltending position. By having Allen around for two more seasons, on top of the upcoming 2022-2023 season, the Canadiens will have the opportunity to evaluate, target and acquire a young goaltender that could grow with the existing core and be mentored by Allen in the process.

Having Allen as an insurance plan assures that the Canadiens at least have a chance to remain somewhat competitive during the process of acquiring said goaltender of the future.

There was significant interest on the trade market for Jake Allen over the last few months, and there were some that would have preferred the Canadiens to capitalize on Allen’s trade value to truly plummet in the standings the next couple of years. However, as we have seen from top young teams in the league that have failed to go very far in the playoffs over the last few seasons, having stability at the goaltending position is key to any rebuild.

Jake Allen isn’t going to win Vezina trophies for the Montreal Canadiens, but, at a cap hit under $4M for just two years, for your No. 1 goaltender; it’s a deal that provides the Canadiens with far more than meets the eye.

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Curtis Ault

Had they not extended him and traded him at this season’s deadline, the Habs would have had to spend the summer finding a player like Jake Allen. This extension makes perfect sense.

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