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Hughes Pulls Off a Surprising Move and Price Out this Year

August 18, 2022, 5:15 PM ET [149 Comments]
Karine Hains
Montreal Canadiens Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Follow me @KarineHains for all updates about the Montreal Canadiens and women's hockey

For days now, we’ve been hearing that a Kadri deal with the Isles was in the process of being finalized so against all odds, it was announced today that the biggest fish left in the free agent pond had signed a 7-year deal with the Calgary Flames. Brad Treliving, the Flames GM, is having quite the offseason. After Johnny Gaudreau bolted for greener pastures in free agency and Matthew Tkachuk told him he didn’t want to stay in Calgary long term, he landed right back on feet by trading Tkachuk for Huberdeau and Weegar, signing Huberdeau to a long-term pact and then today inking Kadri long-term. Impressive moves, but costly ones and something had to give. As a result, Calgary decided to send Sean Monahan and his and his $6.38 M cap hit packing, meaning that the 3 players who were seen as the Flames future not so long ago have now all departed.

I was listening to TSN 690 at lunch when the news of the Kadri signing broke when Mitch Gallo said: “hearing that the Flames will be moving Sean Monahan to the Canadiens to get some cap room” and to be honest, I just couldn’t believe it. Not because Gallo isn’t connected enough or lacks credibility but because it was just so unexpected. Kudos to Gallo for that scoop! Fast forward 40 minutes later and Eliott Friedman tweeted the same thing. As I’m writing this, the trade has yet to be officially announced but everyone is considering it a done deal. According to the rumors out there, a 1st round pick would also be on its way to Montreal.

It's hard to comment on this without knowing the full extent of the deal, but here’s what we know about Sean Monahan. At 27 years old, the center is unconditionally loved in the Flames’ room and was an alternate captain. In his 9 years in the league, he’s registered more than 20 goals 7 times and was seen as an offensive dynamo for Calgary until he caught the injury bug big time. Last year, he had hip surgery and this Spring, he had it on his other hip. For the last couple of years, he’s struggled offensively and drop way down in the Flames depth chart. This last season, he could only muster 23 points in 65 games and his stock has crashed so low that the Flames couldn’t expect much in return for him.

Currently, Cap Friendly still has him listed on LTIR but it’s unclear if he’ll be ready to go for the upcoming season which is the last one of his 7-year deal. If he does play, does this mean that Kent Hughes knows he’ll have the cap space to accommodate him? Meaning that Carey Price and/or Paul Byron will go back to LTIR? Or will we have a surprise when the trade is officially announced and learn that Hughes managed to move a big contract in a 3-way deal? For now, there’s a lot of hypothesis and speculations out there, but as soon as we know more, I’ll update you…

Meanwhile it’s worth noting that at Team Canada practice at the World Junior Championships Bedard and McTavish are split up for the first time, Roy and Dufour who have been work horses move up to line 1 and Kidney is back to 13th forward with Greig absent from practice. An unfortunate injury for Greig might just have given another big opportunity to Roy, it will be interesting to see if he’s able to grab it with both hands now that the McTavish and Bedard won’t be on the same line anymore…we’ll see how this plays out tomorrow at 4:00 PM.

Edit: Canadiens get Sean Monahan and a conditional 2025 1st round pick while the Flames get future considerations, one might say the pulled a Vegas.

Further edit: Kent Hughes confirms that they will accomodate Monahan’s salary by putting Price on LTIR, the news on his knee are discouraging, doesnt see a way he gets back to play this season. No progress on the knee. Plasma injection did not help.
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