Skip to content
Sean Monahan could be traded, then return in the summer
Since the start of the year, Sean Monahan has been playing at an extremely high level for the Canadiens. The former Flames player, acquired with a first-round pick for absolutely nothing, is proving to be quite a player when healthy.

Not for nothing does Arpon Basu rightly note that Monahan is possibly the CH’s most important forward this season.

The 29-year-old veteran now has 13 points in 15 games, an even more impressive haul than his 17 points in 25 games last season. But beyond the points, the fact that Monahan is a leader and a Swiss Army knife within the group means that his value isn’t just measured on the scoresheet.

Tonight, moreover, Monahan will have the opportunity to face his former club, who are really not having a great season. Do you think they regret choosing Nazem Kadri over Monahan?

Having said that, in Mony‘s case, the real problem is injury. Last year, it was during the game against the Flames that his condition worsened, causing him to miss the rest of the campaign.

This added to a long list of injuries in his career.

The big question when it comes to Monahan in Montreal, then, is how to deal with the forward’s future. The #91 will be a free agent at the end of this season, and with the CH still rebuilding, “extend him or trade him?” is almost as popular a question as “creamy coleslaw or traditional?”.

Kent Hughes said this morning that he was open to offering a contract extension to his center, whom he sees as an extremely important player on his team.

However, during his column of the day on BPM Sports, Renaud Lavoie raised the possibility of the Tricolore trading Monahan between now and the trade deadline… before coming to an agreement with him on the autonomy market in the summer of 2024.

Yes, a bit like what once seemed to be the plan with Ilya Kovalchuk in 2020.

There’s obviously a big element of risk involved here, since if the CH ever sends Monahan elsewhere, it loses its exclusive negotiating window with the center. This could mean that another team (including the one to which the veteran would be traded, although the aspiring team in question could be tight for money) could come to an agreement with Monahan, who would then not be back in Montreal.

That said, Lavoie explains that Don Meehan, who works with Monahan’s agent (Pat Morris), keeps telling anyone who will listen that Mony loves playing in Montreal. If the club ever wants to keep him, and pays him what he’s worth, the former Flames player will be tempted to stay in town.

Last year, however, he waited a few weeks before signing with the Habs to see if another team would dare offer him a multi-year contract. He loves Montreal… but not at any price.

So, if the Habs are in the thick of the playoff race in February and Monahan is healthy (and still producing), it will be very tempting for the club to retain the services of its forward. He still risks commanding a good salary ($5.5 million a year wouldn’t be too much to ask), but if the CH feels he’s that important to its line-up, he could be worth it.

But if the club’s losing streak continues and Monahan still has good value on the trade market, trading him at a high price would be the logical way to rebuild. Or try to re-sign him in the summer…

In the meantime, let’s hope that #91 continues to perform well, as his trio is experiencing a bit of a slump these days. He’s a hell of a hockey player, and if he can stay healthy, he’ll certainly help the CH win games by the ton.

In bursts

– He’s getting comfortable in the NHL.

– A fine for Leon Draisaitl.

– Jack Studnicka was not claimed in the waivers.

– Still?

– Nice read on the Jays’ plans this winter.

More Content