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Canadiens Announce Some Reinforcements For Laval Rocket



Montreal Canadiens

Montreal Canadiens prospect Emil Heineman will be coming over to North America, as he’s set to join the Laval Rocket for the rest of the season.

Emil Heineman, who originally joined the Canadiens organization in the trade with the Calgary Flames involving Tyler Toffoli, is set to join the Laval Rocket this morning.

With Leksand’s elimination in the SHL playoffs last week, Heineman’s SHL season is over and he was eligible to be reassigned to Laval by general manager Kent Hughes; just as they did last season before an upper-body injury nixed his Laval Rocket debut.

It’s huge news for the Laval Rocket, who have been plagued by the Canadiens’ incessant recalls and their own set of injuries; forcing them to look beyond the Canadiens’ organization for help.

With Heineman joining the fold, the Rocket will now have a major piece to help them down the stretch in their efforts to secure a spot in the AHL Playoffs.

This will also be a great experience for Heineman, as he will be able to get his feet wet in North America for the remainder of the spring; allowing him to get accustomed to his new environment before training camp in the fall.

Eligible For Playoffs

The Canadiens can send Heineman to the Laval Rocket for the end of the season without issue; as well as the playoffs.

The AHL’s playoff eligibility rule, which requires NHL teams to “paper” NHL prospects to the AHL during the NHL Trade Deadline, does not apply to European imports or junior-based prospects.

Even if Heineman had a valid entry-level contract (ELC), the fact that he spent this season in Europe absolves him of the AHL’s ruling; a nifty advantage for the prospect to get the best of both worlds.

Thus Heineman would be able to join the Rocket for their ongoing playoff push and would give them a much-needed boost of size and speed.

In North America To Stay

It’s also worth noting that Heineman is now firmly under the control of the Montreal Canadiens moving forward.

That means that, as of this moment, he will either be a member of the Laval Rocket or Montreal Canadiens roster moving forward; as he completed his obligations in Sweden, despite still having two years on his deal with Leksand.

As per the IIHF agreement with the NHL, a player would be subject to return to their European club due to the following conditions:

  • The player is under contract with their European club and finished the most recent season with said club.
  • The player is under 24 years old as of the moment of the contract’s signing.
  • The player is unable to earn a roster spot with his NHL club out of camp.
  • Unless the player was selected in the 1st round of an NHL Draft.

Due to Heineman signing his ELC at the age of 21, and also being under contract with Leksand for an additional three seasons after his signing with the Canadiens, he had to be returned to Sweden this fall after Montreal’s training camp.

It’s also worth mentioning that he was a 2nd-round pick, inhibiting him from spending the year in North America.

However, according to the transfer agreement, this limitation is only in place for the first year of the player’s NHL ELC. With Heineman having spent this past year in Sweden and filled the obligations of the NHL-IIHF transfer agreement, the Canadiens now have full control over where he plays moving forward.

Things will start to get interesting for the Laval Rocket over the next couple of days, as Jayden Struble has also joined the fold on a ATO; with other Canadiens prospects possibly likely turning pro in the next few weeks as well.


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Does Heinemen have to pass through waivers after training camp next year if he doesn’t make the Canadiens?

Pierre B.

Heineman will only be waivers-eligible either after 3 seasons (so, the 2025-2026 season) or after playing 80 NHL games. Thus, no worries for next season.


Great. Thanks, Pierre.

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