Canadians’ mailbag: off-season trade with the Avalanche could materialize


Welcome to the third edition of the Montreal Canadiens #AskEE mailbag, from which I extracted questions to answer about an offer sheet from Mikhail Sergachev, Ryan Poehling’s place in the depth table , Alexander Romanov’s place this season / next season, the playoffs / game scenarios against draw lottery positioning, Tomas Tatar and Max Domi and unused matches with the Colorado Avalanche.

If your question remains unanswered, please know that I still greatly appreciate your participation and encourage you to try again for the next installment, which will appear on shortly.

Sensational. It’s a question right now, which poses an extremely compelling storyline for a variety of reasons – not the least of which is that Canadians have been looking for a profile defender for Mikhail Sergachev since they traded Mikhail Sergachev at the Lightning from Tampa Bay for Jonathan Drouin in 2017.

But I think if Tampa could lock up Sergachev for somewhere between $ 4.2 million and $ 6.4 million (as you suggest they can by matching this offer), they would do it in the blink of an eye eye. The 21-year-old left-hander, who was drafted ninth overall by the Canadiens in 2016, has really won this season and tends to become a legitimate number 2 player on an elite team.

Certainly, the elite team he is currently working with already has more than $ 76 million committed for just 15 players next season and must get it, breakout center Anthony Cirelli and top defender Erik Cernak have Signed new agreements. With the upper limit of the ceiling likely not to exceed the current threshold of $ 81.5 million in 2020-2021, the Lightning has serious mathematical gymnastics to do to comply.

Even though Lightning general manager Julien Brisebois is a recognized genius in the cap management department, and even if he has done an exceptional job in making players accept less than they are worth (here is you, Brayden Point), it’s going to have to lose a contract – or two – to keep everything in shape. And that only complicates things that a number of players he could consider as candidates for trade have no-trade clauses.

A single compliance buyout granted to all teams helps but, even if an agreement is reached, Brisebois should also dispatch one of Ondrej Palat, Alex Killorn, Yanni Gourde or Tyler Johnson to free up money to keep Cirelli, Sergachev and Cernak.

Hence your question …

Going back to it, I think if the Canadians really wanted Sergachev, they would have to bid in a higher bracket – something in the neighborhood of $ 8 million – and be prepared to give up a first, second and third – choice round to do it. I do not see that happening.

But I think the Canadians will sniff around whoever the Lightning might be looking to make room for Sergachev and his other restricted free agents.

Someone else asked if the Canadians could do a Joel Armia-style breakout by leveraging their caps to help a team like the Lightning, and I think they are in a good position to do just that. Perhaps such a decision does not give them a high-level defender like Sergachev, but it could very well provide them with one of the impact attackers mentioned above.

This is a good question that Canadians do not necessarily need answered immediately.

Poehling’s proof that he can play the wing in the second half of the season – which was anything but a given when he looked completely irrelevant from November 5 to 12 – opened up a faster route to becoming an NHL regular. His six-foot-two, 205-pound frame and hockey skills help him play the wing, and if he’s ready to bring a physical dimension that will help him too.

The reality is that there is more depth in the middle of the current and Poehling’s versatility is an asset. If he proves to be an effective winger, this may be where he fits best in the long run.

But if a spot opens in the middle, there is no reason why Poehling cannot fill it adequately based on all of his experience playing in the center.

The only thing that should matter to the Canadians is that the 21-year-old continues on his way to becoming a hard-hitting NHL player. If he does, he helps them no matter what position he plays.

Hi Garrett. My family and I are doing very well. Thanks for asking.

I found it interesting that someone immediately answered “Laval for sure” to your question and that you replied that this is what you prefer. I think most of this sentiment is rooted in a (rational) fear that Canadians will not manage Romanov’s development well and will give him too soon.

Without seeing Romanov play an NHL exhibition game, let alone a regular season or playoff game, it’s pretty hard to predict where he’ll be right now.

But I’m confident – based on what I’ve seen of him at other levels and what Scouts and cadres have told me about him – that he will at least be able to start the third duo of Montreal. And I would say he would be able to do it in July (whatever October), if the 2019-2020 NHL season then resumes, and if the rules allow him to play.

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I understand fans of the Canadiens are very concerned about this player’s overexposure, and I know they are concerned that he is rushed, but Romanov has two years of KHL experience under his belt and plays a professional style game that lends itself to immediate graduation. the NHL.

Management believes that it is ready, that it believes that it is ready and that it is going to have the possibility of proving that it is ready.

I don’t think the Canadians will hesitate to put Romanov in Laval if he fails this test.

But I don’t expect it to fail. I expect it to pass with flying colors.

Simple question, not so simple answer: I’m not entirely sure what the long-term future holds for either player.

The global pandemic has thrown so many more variables into the mix of free agents on hold that their contracts expire this or next season. If Domi (RFA in 2020) was striving for a one-year contract before the release of COVID-19, it’s hard to imagine him being on something longer than that now. And the Tatar (UFA in 2021) was in the process of concluding the type of contract that would get him out of Montreal, but now you have to wonder if this type of agreement – a four or five year agreement worth more than $ 6 million dollars per – will be available to a player like him.

Tatar will be 30 years old at the end of his contract and it is almost unimaginable that the salary cap will increase by then.

I will say this: I love the chances that Domi and Tatar will be with the Canadiens throughout the 2020-21 season.

My feeling is that players would happily take a chance at a Stanley Cup – no matter how far-fetched they can win it this season – if they can play for it through a playoff format extended playoffs.

But if the idea is just to come back and play what amounts to 11 insignificant games left on the regular season schedule, I don’t think players have much appetite for it. Especially since it would mean sacrificing time that could be spent preparing for the next season, or potentially spending months away from the family.

I think Brendan Gallagher and Phillip Danault made these points clear. I think those were also fair points.

Understand that this is a similar question to the last one, I will keep this answer brief.

I think management would prefer a choice of lottery, or at least a choice in the top 10 of the project.

As for the players, they will take precedence over everything.

And if the Canadians manage to win the Cup as a 24th-ranked NHL team, there should be an asterisk next to it – and not for the reason that they had nothing to do in the playoffs, but more so because it would be one of the most unlikely championships in the history of the sport.

I love this question, Lori.

Even if we took the word of the general manager of the Avalanche, Joe Sakic, that the prolonged stay of Bergevin in Denver, in the period preceding the deadline of February 24, was purely related to his daughter attending the University of Colorado , I’m pretty sure the Canadiens’ deputy general manager Scott Mellanby (who was also there) doesn’t have kids in the state.

In other words, something was brewing there and it wasn’t just coffee in the young Bergevin’s dormitory.

I can’t pinpoint what was specifically discussed – I tried at the time and have tried since and nothing comes back to me beyond the kind of speculation I could find myself. What I would say, however, is that some seeds were probably planted and we could see something materializing between these teams at some point during the off season. There are several scenarios that make them good business partners.


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