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NHL Trade Chatter: Canadiens Monahan Still Linked To Avalanche

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NHL Trade

It’s no secret the Montreal Canadiens will be weighing the possibility of moving Sean Monahan at the NHL Trade Deadline, with one team, in particular, continuing to come up in trade chatter.

The Colorado Avalanche are looking to get their shopping endeavours moving and don’t necessarily have the assets to go big-game hunting for the likes of Bo Horvat nor go through the cap retention hoops required to acquire Jonathan Toews from Chicago (if he wants to be moved).

After having connected with the Montreal Canadiens on a clutch trade for Arturri Lehkonen, the Avalanche could make it two-for-two leading up to the 2023 NHL Trade Deadline by zeroing in on a cheaper alternative to Bo Horvat in Sean Monahan.

Montreal Hockey Now has learned that Monahan is indeed part of the list of targets for the Avalanche, who are actively looking into getting themselves a centre to help balance their lineup as they start to get healthy again.

NHL Insider Pierre LeBrun has also linked Monahan to the Avalanche on a multitude of occasions. Given the uncertainty with Ryan O’Reilly and Jonathan Toews, Sean Monahan represents the surest bet to fit in their lineup and play some meaningful minutes.

The issue is that Sean Monahan himself needs to get back to health and play some games before a team is going to dish out the kind of assets that would make Kent Hughes consider moving the 27-year-old.

According to a recent Montreal Canadiens health update, Monahan should be nearing a return this week, aowing him a handful of games before the NHL All-Star game to get his feet going again before a very important month of February for both him and the Canadiens.

Prior to his foot injury, which has kept him out of the lineup for six weeks now, Monahan was one of the most valuable players on the Canadiens roster.

The rugged centre posted six goals and 11 assists for 17 points in the 25 games he’s played so far, all while playing a sound two-way game and winning 55% of his draws on the faceoff dot.

It’s worth noting how Montreal’s offensive game has struggled without him, particularly the play of Nick Suzuki, who has to take on more responsibility without Monahan in the lineup.

His absence further displays what kind of an impact he could have on a team, but here’s why the Avalanche make for the best fit.

The Perfect Fit

The Avalanche had one of the most balanced rosters in the NHL last season, until they were forced to let Nazem Kadri walk in the summer after winning the Stanley Cup.

Owning the position of second-line centre for the Avalanche, the loss of Kadri has been a big hole for the Avalanche, who have tried to test the likes of Evan Rodrigues, J.T. Compher and Alex Newhook in those positions to no avail.

In fact, none of the Avalanche’s regular centres have a faceoff percentage higher than 49% at this time, a major point of worry going into the second half of the season fighting for a Wild Card spot.

Further to that, Monahan could play some sound even-strength hockey for the Avalanche, who used to thrive at 5-on-5 last season, as the Canadiens centre sports a some of the best underlying numbers on the team, while being able to play in all other situations in a pinch.

Having someone like Monahan would allow the Avanlanche to drop Compher to his ideal spot in the middle of the third line, restoring balance to their roster and providing head coach Jared Bednar with two scoring lines that could dominate at even-strength.

The fit certainly makes sense, and it’s understandable why the Avalanche have been keeping tabs, but any trade will be contingent on Monahan’s health.

Something to keep an eye on moving forward.

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Darryl

I was never a big fan of Monahan in Calgary but watching him more closely in Montreal has changed my opinion. He’s such a smart 200 foot player. Like Lekhonen he would be a stud in Colorado.

Billy739

For the same reason you list everyone is looking at Monahan harder.

There’s also asking about Christian Dvorak due to the lack of options vs the amount of teams that are in search of Center’s this year. While COL maybe interested they dont really have the resources to pull it off given Sakic rarely trades a single 1st round pick let alone multiple pieces it would require ontop of that.

Honestly Christian Dvorak might fit COL plans easier because less teams will be in on him due to his Term. There’s only about 4-5 teams able to get in the mix on Dvorak and although COL isnt one of those teams if they saw Dvorak as Compher’s replacement it would work.(and be a considerable upgrade giving them a bulk faceoffs defensive Center)

Monahan i see ending up in Minnisota for a conditional 1st in 2025 and Spacek.
He fits our teams needs and is about to make the jump to Pro as he age’s out of junior making him an ideal fit for MTL’s rebuild. A late 1st in this years draft you might be able to find a Spacek but its more likely they’ll try to land Barron like deal. Given MIN limited ability to compete in the market on players with higher caps Monahan’s pretty much their only target.

That is assuming no other team loses a Center between now and then.

Tyrone

I’ve been saying Dvorak in Colorado makes sense on another site (as you know and responded there). Now it’s my turn here. 😁

Brian Chandler

Beaucage or Stienburg and a pick coming back.

Tyrone

What does Colorado have that we need? An unprotected 1st rounder in 2023 would work for me, but Sakic is too smart for that.

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