Montreal Canadiens: Recent Signing Increases Jake Allen's Trade Value

Dec 2, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens goalie Jake Allen (34) tracks the puck
Dec 2, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens goalie Jake Allen (34) tracks the puck / David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports

The Montreal Canadiens have been carrying three goaltenders all season and would prefer to move one sooner than later.

Of course, they would have preferred to move one months ago, but we are more than halfway through the NHL schedule and the dreaded three headed goaltending monster still exists. The Canadiens simply have not been offered a big enough return to pull the trigger on a trade.

At least not yet. As the season goes along, Jake Allen's trade value has only increased. That's not because of his dominance in the crease, his 3.46 GAA and .900 SV% are quite pedestrian, but do come from playing behind a less than stellar squad.

His value is increasing simply because of supply and demand. The demand for a backup, or platoon veteran netminder was not that high at the beginning of the season. Since then, the Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers, New Jersey Devils and Toronto Maple Leafs have lost confidence in their goaltending.

That means the demand is way up.

Also, veteran Petr Mrazek, who has a similar cap hit to Allen this season but was a pending free agent this summer, just signed an extension. The fact Allen has an extra year on his contract with a cap hit of $3.85 million might scare off a few teams. Mrazek earns $3.8 million this season but the Blackhawks could have eaten half of that in a trade, making it easy to deal him.

However, the Blackhawks re-signed Mrazek to a two-year extension so he is definitely off the trade market. That doesn't leave many options out there for these teams who want an upgrade in goal.

That means the supply is quite low.

Basic economics tell us Allen's trade value has gone way up since the start of the season. While he has not been exceptional he does have better numbers than last season. Meanwhile, more and more teams continue to have goaltending needs while less and less goalies seem to be available via trade.

This is teetering toward Jake Allen getting dealt for a surprisingly high return. It is quite the game of poker Kent Hughes is playing, but all it takes is one desperate team to make a great offer. Right now, it looks like there are four or five desperate teams so it is just a matter of time before he gets the right offer.