How the NHL trade deadline helped the Canadiens

The Canadiens weren’t buying at the NHL trade deadline, so instead, they continued what has been, so far, a promising rebuild of their organization.

Toronto Maple Leafs v Montreal Canadiens
Toronto Maple Leafs v Montreal Canadiens / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages
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The Montreal Canadiens still have a long way to go in their rebuild, and while they gave us some exciting hockey early, they are just 9-14-5 since the calendar year began. With the playoffs out of reach for yet another season, it made sense for the Canadiens to ‘sell’ as much as possible before the NHL trade deadline on March 8th. 

Their blockbuster sale came over a month before the deadline, however, when they sent Sean Monahan to the Winnipeg Jets for a first-round pick this season and a conditional third-rounder in 2027. Whether the conditions for the latter pick hold is irrelevant, as the trade gave Montreal a second first-rounder in the upcoming 2024 NHL Draft, and that could be huge if they land the right talent. 

On March 7th, Montreal made an under-the-radar move when they sent Jan Mysak to the Anaheim Ducks for Jacob Perreault. A first-round pick in 2020, Perreault had played most of the last four seasons for the Ducks AHL affiliate, the San Diego Gulls. 

Candiens didn’t ‘sell’ much at the NHL trade deadline, but still got help

He hasn’t been a consistent scorer, but it’s also important to account that he’s been the team’s youngest player, not to mention the Gulls were also the worst team in the AHL last season. Overall, he was worth taking a chance on in a pre-deadline trade with another rebuilding organization. 

Montreal also snagged a conditional third-round pick for 2025 when they traded goaltender Jake Allen to the New Jersey Devils. This was also a good move on Montreal’s part, as they could break from the ill-fated three-goalie system while snagging a mid-round pick that could turn into a second should Allen play in at least 40 or more games and is with a team in the 2025 Stanley Cup Playoffs. 

Overall, Montreal acquired quite a few draft picks for now and in the future, plus one talented AHL prospect. It was a year of ‘selling’ and buying a low-risk prospect, but it was exactly what the rebuilding Canadiens needed. 

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(Information provided by Cap Friendly)