Ranking The Montreal Canadiens Defenders Most Likely To Be Traded At Trade Deadline

Feb 27, 2024; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens defenseman Jordan Harris.
Feb 27, 2024; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens defenseman Jordan Harris. / David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports
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The "Could Happen But There Is No Rush" Tier

These two players will likely have their names out there in trade talks, but are under team control for a while yet so don't need to be moved this week.

4. Mike Matheson

Mike Matheson is having a great season with the Canadiens. He is having one of the best offensive seasons we have seen from a Canadiens defenseman in years and is among the league leaders in ice time as well.

He is also signed for two more seasons after this one at a very reasonable cap hit of $4.85 million. He just turned 30 which means this is probably as good as it will get, but with his skating abililty and offensive instincts, his production is not going to disappear overnight.

The Canadiens have a lot of young defenders but there is risk in having too many young players without the proper mentors around. Matheson is a good mentor and leader for the younger players and is providing a lot of value to the team right now and can help them over the next two years when they try to contend for a playoff spot again.

Of course, if the Tampa Bay Lightning offer a boatload of picks and prospects, the Canadiens have to say yes at some point.

3. Johnathan Kovacevic

Johnathan Kovacevic was picked up off waivers a year and a half ago but has proven he is a contributor at the NHL level. He is big, shoots right and plays a physical style which makes him an attractive player for other teams.

The 26 year old would be joining a team as their sixth or seventh defender, but there is plenty of upside in the 6'5" and 223 pound blue liner and teams will be interested.