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Former First-Round Pick On Waivers Could Help Injured Canadiens

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Canadiens potential waiver wire pickup Svechnikov

For the vast majority of the season, the Montreal Canadiens had too many healthy players on the roster, which led to frustration for veteran players and rookies alike.

But now that Brendan Gallagher, Jonathan Drouin, and Mike Hoffman have been sidelined (in addition to Sean Monahan’s questionable health status), reinforcements may be in order.

The team could look to the Laval Rocket to bolster their lineup, as there are several legitimate options depending on what the Canadiens are looking for, but seeing as Evgeny Svechnikov, a first-round pick in 2015, is available on the waiver wire, the team may want to avoid pilfering their AHL affiliate.

Svechnikov, the older brother of Carolina Hurricanes standout Andrei Svechnikov, was placed on waivers Wednesday by the San Jose Sharks, as former Canadiens forward Alex Galchenyuk cleared the waiver wire without garnering much interest from any team in the league.

Svechnikov is a 26-year-old left winger, who has three goals and three assists in 20 games with the Sharks this season. Overall, he’s earned 15 goals and 22 assists in 133 games throughout his NHL career.

At 6’3″, Svechnikov certainly possesses an interesting frame, one that may attract some attention now that he’s available for free on the waiver wire.

Roster Realization

If the Canadiens decide to send first-overall pick Juraj Slafkovsky to the World Junior Championship, Svechnikov could become a band-aid solution, one that epitomizes the idea of no-risk, low-reward.

Admittedly, the odds Kent Hughes decides to claim Svechnikov are rather low, but seeing as he’s among the most active general managers on the trade market, a waiver claim could allow him to move forward with trade negotiations regarding his many struggling veteran forwards without worrying about a lack of warm bodies in the lineup.

With the NHL holiday roster freeze on the horizon, Hughes is facing a soft deadline to find the aforementioned veterans new homes, which would in turn put to rest the concern regarding the roster logjam and allow St-Louis to have a little more flexibility when it comes to the ice time available in his lineup.

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