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Montreal Canadiens

Canadiens Patience Could Pay Off On NHL Trade Market



Montreal Canadiens

It seems like the NHL Trade Deadline came early this year, but that may be both a blessing and a curse for the Montreal Canadiens.

With many of the prospective buyers having finished their shopping early this year, it seems like the market has dried up a great deal with a little over 24 hours to go before the NHL Trade Deadline.

The Canadiens, who had some questionable trade positioning to begin with, find themselves with even fewer potential partners, as the market’s tradeable assets seemingly deplete by the hour.

However, that could also have a positive effect, as the Western Conference has been reluctant to keep up pace with the ridiculous arms race in the Eastern Conference, outside of the L.A. Kings and Colorado Avalanche.

With the likes of Jakob Chychrun, Vladislav Gavrikov, Mattias Ekholm and more all off the board, the Canadiens now have the ability to wait out the rest of the buyers; especially those that were looking to add some extra defensive help at the start of the Trade Deadline.

The timing also coincides with other buyers who were previously looking for help on defence, like the Tampa Bay Lightning, Pittsburgh Penguins and Winnipeg Jets to pivot toward other options.

Joel Edmundson is slated to be back to playing regular hockey in the coming days, if not on Thursday night against the Anaheim Ducks, and could be a prime candidate for one of these teams; all three of which play a mature, hard-hitting style.

The Canadiens also possess some good salary cap flexibility, which helped them to acquire Denis Gurianov on Sunday. By being able to take on an extra $400,000 in salary, the Canadiens were able to finalize a swap with the Dallas Stars when they sent Evgenii Dadonov (at 50%) out West.

That kind of flexibility will also come into play at this junction, as the Canadiens only have two retention slots left, and are unlikely, at least for now, to be cap brokers at this junction of the trade season.

By being able to either retain salary on Edmundson’s contract for the next season and a half, or take back a contract until the end of the season to make the money work, the Canadiens may yet be able to make a move or two before March 3.

But, as we saw last year, patience will be key.

The Arturri Lehkonen and Brett Kulak trades didn’t come until an hour before the NHL Trade Deadline; a time when most NHL general managers circle back on some of their targets to see if they can snag more reinforcements for the playoffs.

The next 24 hours will tell us if Montreal Canadiens general manager Kent Hughes’ patience will pay off for a second year in a row.

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new slogan,. 25 in 25?


Edmonson isn’t going to fetch much if anyone wants him at all.


Off the board with Edmundson to Buffalo for a 2nd round pick.


I think Edmundson to Pittsburgh would be a good fit for the Penguins. When was Edmundson his best? When he played with Petry. When was Petry his best? When he played with Edmundson. Not only would Pittsburgh be gaining the services of Edmundson, but they’d also be rejuvenating Petry. Seems like a decent risk to take for me.

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