Montreal Canadiens: New Quarantine Rules Will Help Habs

Mar 19, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 19, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports /

Montreal Canadiens trades and acquisitions have been few and far between this season.

After a busy offseason that saw Jake Allen, Joel Edmundson, Alexander Romanov, Josh Anderson, Tyler Toffoli, Corey Perry and Michael Frolik join the fold, there’s hardly been a call up from the Laval Rocket since the season began.

Part of that is due to the health of the team and how fortunate they’ve been with injuries. But another part of that is the Covid-19 quarantine rules.

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Until now, had the Canadiens acquired a player from a team in the United States, that player would have to serve a 14 day quarantine before joining the team. We saw this with Pierre-Luc Dubois when the Winnipeg Jets traded Patrik Laine and Jack Roslovic for him. Dubois sat in a hotel room for two weeks before finally suiting up for the Jets.

However, it sounds like that is about to change.

The Federal Government in Canada is apparently poised to change the rules for NHL player’s entering Canada. On TSN’s Insider Trading segment, Darren Dreger reported that the quarantine period for player’s moving to Canada will be reduced from 14 to just seven days. This is the same system that was used for training camp back in January and it seemed to work pretty well as no games were affected by Covid-19 in Canada until a handful of Habs games this week.

This should make swinging deals easier for Marc Bergevin and the other six Canadian general managers. The trade deadline is just over two weeks away and it would have been difficult to trade for a player knowing they would need to quarantine in a hotel room for two full weeks before skating with their new team.

At that rate, if the Habs acquired a player on trade deadline day, they wouldn’t be eligible to play until April 26, when the Habs have just six regular season games left before the playoffs. Instead, after a seven day quarantine, the Habs would have ten games remaining for their newest players to find some chemistry before the postseason.

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With all of the financial struggles and lack of income teams are facing this season, the trade deadline might be a quiet one. However, this change to the quarantine rules will make it a little easier for the Habs to make deals.