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Off-season: the rest of Kent Hughes’ summer will be quieter

I don’t know about you, but the last few weeks have been exhausting in the field hockey world. I’m telling you this from the point of view of a guy who works in field hockey.

Seeing the draft so close to July 1 created intense chaos in the media world. Imagine what it was like for organizations like the Habs…

Because since the season has been called off, Kent Hughes has done everything but play dead. With Jeff Gorton and his team on the second floor, he first dealt with upcoming free agents (to keep them or not) in addition to preparing for the draft. He also carried out transactions.

And even if the CH wasn’t the most involved free agent, nobody’s going to make me believe that Kent Hughes didn’t keep abreast of the ins and outs of the market.

And recently, the GM came to an agreement with a few players in need of a contract, including Rafaël Harvey-Pinard and Alex Newhook.

The bottom line. All this to say that, at the moment, it’s clear that the GM’s shopping list is getting slimmer and slimmer, and that the early summer rush is over. After all, even the development camp is behind us… and David Reinbacher is signed.

So, with the big rush behind him, the GM can afford a little vacation.

Obviously, he’ll need to have his phone handy to be ready to spring into action if an opportunity to dump a forward ever presents itself, but at this point, I can’t see a GM calling Hughes for Mike Hoffman or Joel Armia.

One can hope, though.

All this to say that the files on the GM’s desk are no longer as pressing. Because no, signing Jesse Ylönen, Nicolas Beaudin and Lucas Condotta is not urgent. With all due respect to the guys, of course.

When you look at the issues that still need to be resolved, you’re talking about adding depth to Laval, appointing an assistant captain or something like that. It’s nothing that absolutely has to be done by mid-July.

Already, when you look at an article on the subject from a few days ago, you can see that the bulk of the work is (already) done. #AlexNewhook

In fact, there’s perhaps one file that’s (a little) more pressing than the others: that of putting Samuel Montembeault under contract for a few more years.

As you may know, Samuel Montembeault will earn a million dollars in 2023-2024 and will be as free as a bird after that. The goal is to keep him in town longer. And Kent Hughes knows it.

Not only is it a good idea to start negotiating sooner rather than later, it’s also what the Quebec stopper wants. He’d like to sign a new contract sooner rather than later.

We know that the GM wants to sign Jesse Ylönen before going after the Quebecer, though.

I have a feeling that the GM can still afford, if that’s what he wants, to take a few weeks for himself before tackling the other files next. He can also sign Ylönen quickly, of course.

Monty is the kind of case that could go to August or even training camp.

In gusts

– Attention tennis fans.

– Really?

– Ottawa has a good basketball team.

– Interesting.

– For what it’s worth, the Coyotes made a move this summer.

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