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Alex Newhook’s contract gives the Canadiens even more flexibility in 2024-2025
A year ago, I was thinking that the CH probably wanted to reach the bottom of the barrel by the summer of 2023 in terms of the standings. That seems to be the case, and at this point you can expect to see the CH slowly climb back up.

Obviously, a bad season is still on the cards for the Habs, but the club wants to move up. It wants to progress so that, in a year’s time, it’s in a position to take a big step forward.

So, on paper, there’s still one more difficult year to go before we try to make the playoffs.

That’s why it’s interesting to note that, with the signing of Alex Newhook for four seasons, the Montreal Canadiens have clarified their picture for what’s to come.

After all, even if Jesse Ylönen remains to be signed (in addition to Nicolas Beaudin and Lucas Condotta), it won’t be a game-changer for the Habs’ long-term future.

These are more minor matters… and Kent Hughes can go on vacation for a while.

What’s important to note is that in a year’s time, we already know what the financial picture will look like, since the players whose contracts are up for renewal aren’t of the calibre of, say, Cole Caufield.

Arber Xhekaj and Justin Barron will be the club’s two notable RFAs.

Among the free agents, Samuel Montembeault will be asking for a salary increase and maybe Sean Monahan will stay, but Chris Wideman, Rem Pitlick and (especially) Mike Hoffman will make room.

Thanks to Newhook’s contract, we know that the Habs will have a good $15 million in cash at the moment – and that’s not counting the fact that Price will be heading to the LTIR during the season, thus adding some extra cash.

With the cap going up, dead money disappearing (Karl Alzner and Joel Edmundson will be on the 2023-2024 payroll) and guys leaving, there will be plenty of room.

And that’s where Kent Hughes can have all the fun.

Because this amount doesn’t take into account the fact that buyouts could take place or that transactions will be made. Joel Armia and David Savard, for example, will be a year away from autonomy…

The summer of 2024 could be a fascinating one in town.

In bursts

– To be continued. We knowhe’ll be hired in the next few hours.

– Logical.

– CH has bargain potential. [BPM Sports]

– To be continued.

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