Montreal Canadiens Rumor: Contenders Interested In Joel Armia?

Dec 2, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens right wing Joel Armia
Dec 2, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens right wing Joel Armia / David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports

The Montreal Canadiens started the process of selling their veteran assets ahead of the trade deadline quite early this season.

They were not huge sellers last season, but shipped out Tyler Toffoli quite early two years ago and followed that script again this season. Sean Monahan was traded to the Winnipeg Jets for a first round pick and a conditional third rounder as well.

There are not a players that will definitely be traded by the Canadiens before the trade deadline. Rebuilding teams always look to trade pending UFAs but the Canadiens don't really have any. Tanner Pearson is the only one and his trade value is not that high, especially when you factor in he has a $3.25 million cap hit.

According to David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period, Canadiens veteran winger Joel Armia is a player teams could look to acquire. His cap hit of $3.4 million, which runs through next season, has been assumed to be too prohibitive for teams to really want the player. However, Panotta mentioned if the Canadiens are willing to retain 50%, teams would be interested.

Armia is still an excellent defensive winger who could play a shutdown role on a third line and be a key component of a team's penalty killing unit. At his full cap hit, his nine points in 35 games would make him a bit overpaid, but if the Canadiens retain half and the other team is getting a great defensive winger at $1.7 million, it makes sense there would be interest.

Armia's name has not been out there much on the trade rumor market. so it is interesting to see a hockey insider add him to the list of potential trade candidates. I still don't think the Canadiens would expect a lot in return, but if a team that is good but struggles on the penalty kill wants to improve an important part of their game, Armia would certainly be able to help out.