Montreal Canadiens Approaching Deadline to Sign or Lose a Recent Second Round Pick

DALLAS, TX - JUNE 23: Jacob Olofsson (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
DALLAS, TX - JUNE 23: Jacob Olofsson (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

The Montreal Canadiens must be focused on the upcoming NHL Draft. It is going to be held in the Bell Centre in Montreal and the Habs hold the first overall pick.

They do have one last day to considering signing a recent second round pick. Jacob Olofsson of Sweden was taken in the second round of the 2018 NHL Draft. He profiled as a great defensive centre but a player who lacked much offensive upside.

Of course, you never know with prospects and a great defensive player is a safe base to begin with and you hope their offence comes alive later in their career. That hasn’t really been the case for Olofsson.

It has been four years since he was drafted, and due to that amount of time passing, the Canadiens either have to sign him before June 1st, or lose his rights. He would become an unrestricted free agent if he isn’t signed by the Habs.

Olofsson scored 21 points in 43 games in Allsvenskan in his draft season. As an 18 year old playing in the second best pro league in Sweden, it wasn’t awful offensive production. He has played parts of the past four seasons in SHL, Sweden’s best league, and has only seven goals and 26 points in 99 career games.

This past season, Olofsson scored six points in 25 SHL games and added 14 points in 20 Allsvenskan contests. At 22 years old, he is still a middle six player in Sweden’s version of the AHL.

While many deadlines and important dates on the NHL calendar have been pushed around recently due to Covid interruptions and the season’s starting later, the deadline to sign prospects has not.

That means if Olofsson is not signed by tomorrow, he won’t be property of the Canadiens anymore. It would be nice if the Habs could just sign everyone and hope they eventually develop into NHL talent, but they can only have 50 players under contract at any time.

The Canadiens already have 31 players under contract for next season. They will likely keep most of their RFAs, which could bring that number up to 41, and they need to be on the lookout for some depth pieces this offseason to fill out a roster that was not nearly good enough last season.

It doesn’t look good for Jacob Olofsson getting a last minute deal done to keep his rights with the team that drafted him.

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