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Canadiens Wrap

Habs Wrap: Trade Options, Free Agent, Prospects, Draft Targets

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MONTREAL — Every day comes with a guarantee of fresh Montreal Canadiens news, but it’s simply not possible to always keep up to date with all the flood of Habs-related stories. On Sundays, we recap the most exciting and relevant NHL news stories that you may have missed throughout the week so that you can stay in the Canadiens loop.

Monday

  • Top prospect Owen Beck had a storybook ending to his CHL career. The cerebral centre scored two goals to lead the Saginaw Spirit to their first Memorial Cup championship in team history. Not only does Beck’s final game involve a Memorial Cup win, but he was also named the most valuable player of the tournament. [Canadiens Prospect Owen Beck Steals Spotlight At Memorial Cup]
  • The Montreal Canadiens signed prospect Jared Davidson to an entry-level contract but opted to relinquish the rights of three other prospects from the 2022 NHL Entry Draft. [Montreal Canadiens Lose The Rights To Three Prospects]
  • There are quite a few prospects that could be available at 26th overall, but one that is likely more familiar to Canadiens fans is the younger brother of top prospect, Lane Hutson. Cole Hutson, an electric offensive defenceman in his own right, is ranked right around where the Montreal Canadiens would be set to select for the second time in the first round, assuming the pick isn’t moved in a deal for an offensive forward. In order to learn more about the player, MHN took some time to sit down with the 18-year-old and talk about his record-breaking season. [Top 2024 Prospect Interviews: Cole Hutson Could Spike Interest]
  • Pierre Houde, the voice of the Montreal Canadiens for over three decades, was named the winner of the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award. Few, if any play-by-play broadcasters have matched Houde’s smooth delivery and impact among hockey fans, new and old. [Canadiens Tribute: Pierre Houde Represents The Best Of Us]

Tuesday

  • The NHL’s scouting combine is underway in Buffalo. 2024 NHL Entry Draft hopefuls will undergo medical screenings and team interviews until June 7, with fitness tests taking place on June 8.  Click here to see a list of the players taking part. [Montreal Canadiens Top Draft Targets Already Emerging]
  • Owen Beck finished his CHL career on a high note by scoring two goals and being named the tournament MVP, but now the real work begins. Cracking the Canadiens’ lineup won’t be easy, especially since Jake Evans is playing the best hockey of his career, but Beck’s skillset should translate nicely to the professional level. [The Next Step For Top Montreal Canadiens Prospect Owen Beck]
  • Goaltender Samuel Montembeault is taking advantage of his time off to do a little travelling.

Wednesday

  • We have our first taste of Montreal Canadiens development camp news, as Josh Nadeau (Maine, NCAA) will be among those invited to join the festivities. Nadeau, 20, earned 18 goals and 27 assists in 37 games as a freshman for the Black Bears. Josh is the older brother of Bradley Nadeau, the player who was chosen with the 30th overall pick at the 2022 NHL Entry Draft, a pick that originally belonged to the Habs. The first thing people will point out is that Nadeau is only 5’8, but the most important number to pay attention to is his 1.21 points per game during his first year in the NCAA. It’s not a fluke, either, seeing as Nadeau has a track record of putting up excellent production no matter where he plays. [Nadeau Invited To Canadiens Camp]

  • The Habs made a surprise signing, offering a one-year deal to 27-year-old goaltender Connor Hughes (no relation to Kent). It was a necessary trade that will give the Laval Rocket a chance to focus on their upcoming season rather than the goaltending woes that plagued them at the start of the last campaign. [How New Goaltender Hughes Will Impact Canadiens Organization]
  • It’s that time of year! Mock drafts are in full force, which means we’re due for some healthy prospect debates and flat-out speculation as to the desired players for various teams. Our first article covers the top four picks, with Montreal’s pick to be published later this afternoon. [2024 NHL Mock Draft – Predicting Picks At The 2024 Draft (Part 1)]

 

Thursday

  • The latest ‘Habs Fans Vote’ poll results are out, and the message could not be any clearer. Canadiens fans want the team to draft a forward with the fifth overall pick. Over 85 percent of the votes were cast for three prospects, who all happen to be forwards.  [Habs Fans Vote – Most Wanted Canadiens 2024 Draft Targets]
  • The Montreal Canadiens were looking to be active on the trade front this summer, and they now have even more reason to do so. The big issue at the moment is that, after signing free-agent goaltender Connor Hughes, the Habs already have 41 contracts on the books for next season, meaning they can only add nine more moving forward. [Canadiens Contract Crunch Could Force Further Trades]

Friday

  • Top 2024 prospect Zayne Parekh had nothing but great things to say about Montreal Canadiens prospect Owen Beck. Beck and Parekh were instrumental in earning Saginaw its first hockey championship in team history. Beck, in particular, was a dominant presence, which led to the 20-year-old centre securing Most Valuable Player honours at the Memorial Cup. Now that his CHL career is over, it’s time to take a look at how Beck can take the next step in his career, which will also be the most difficult challenge he’s faced to date.  [The Next Step For Top Montreal Canadiens Prospect Owen Beck]

  • The third part of our 2024 Montreal Hockey Now mock draft has been released, covering picks from the Calgary Flames, the New Jersey Devils, the Buffalo Sabres, and the Philadelphia Flyers. As a reminder, the Canadiens ended up drafting power forward Cayden Lindstrom at fifth overall.  [2024 NHL Mock Draft – Revealing Picks No.9 To No.12]
  • The NHL’s scouting combine is taking place in Buffalo this week, which means teams are interviewing players to put the last touches in place prior to the 2024 NHL Entry Draft in Vegas, on June 28. The Habs are well known to perform intense due diligence during this process, and they tend to speak to as many prospects as possible, which is encouraging, but some of their tactics are a little odd to say the least.

  • F1 star Valtteri Bottas, along with the rest of the F1 community, will be in Montreal on June 9 for the Canadian Grand Prix. Bottas always takes advantage of his visit to have a little fun with his favourite hockey team. Or perhaps it’s his second-favourite hockey team, with all due respect to the Pelicans.

Saturday

  • The Canadiens met with several prospects during the 2024 NHL Scouting Combine in Buffalo this week, including Cayden Lindstrom, Andrew Basha, Aatos Koivu, Tij Iginla, Carter Yakemchuk, Cole Eiserman, Artyom Levschunov, Sam Dickinson, Beckett Sennecke and Sasha Boivert. Many of the top prospects were also brought out to dinner, though fans should remember neither Juraj Slafkovsky nor David Reinbacher were brought to supper by the Canadiens before they were chosen at their respective drafts. Often times, a supper is an indication that the team needs to gather more information before making their choice, not necessarily that the Canadiens are intent on drafting said player. [Habs Fans Vote – Most Wanted Canadiens 2024 Draft Targets]
  • The Montreal Canadiens have made it clear that they would like to make a splash this summer. That could mean any number of things, but Kent Hughes and Co. are well aware that the team needs more offensive firepower, which means they’re likely to evaluate all players available in the NHL’s trade market. Players such as Trevor Zegras, Martin Necas, and Jake Guentzel. All three players bring something to the table for the Habs, but there’s a lot more to consider than just their overall offensive impact.  [Canadiens Trade Targets: Three Quality NHL Forwards Available]
  • Speaking of trade targets, the Anaheim Ducks are reportedly asking for a player such as David Reinbacher or Kaiden Guhle in any trade involving Zegras. Habs fans may not like the idea of losing either player, but it is a good reminder that to acquire talent in the NHL you have to use quality assets in trade negotiations. Fortunately, for those worried about the price tag, Canadiens management does not seem willing to move either defenceman to get Zegras.  [Canadiens Pros And Cons Of Potential Trevor Zegras Trade]

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