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Trading Samuel Montembeault: it has to happen now, says Jean-Nicolas Blanchet

The Habs have been operating with a three-man household in front of their net since the very start of the season. Each of the three goaltenders has to go through the waivers before being sent back to the AHL, and Kent Hughes absolutely doesn’t want to see one of his goaltenders leave for free.

So far, there’s been no problem, but we agree that it takes away room for replacements among the forwards and defensemen. Kent Hughes’ biggest fear is probably that one of the goalkeepers will get injured. With three goalies and one injured, everything’s fine, but if he trades one and one of the remaining two gets injured, he has to rush Jakub Dobes back from Laval.

And frankly, young Dobes clearly isn’t ready for the NHL level of play.

TVA Sports columnist Jean-Nicolas Blanchet, however, thinks that one of the goalies still needs to be traded. And in his opinion, it should be Samuel Montembeault.

In fact, Blanchet relies on advanced statistics from Sportlogiq to support his idea. On average, NHL goaltenders reach their peak performance at the age of 29, after which there is a downward spiral to retirement.

Right now, Samuel Montembeault is 27. He’s only two years away from that peak, and will lose value from then on. He’s probably the most valuable of the CH’s three goalies right now.

Jake Allen will be very difficult to trade because of his age (33) and his contract, which weighs $3.85 million on the payroll until the end of the 2024-25 season. For Cayden Primeau, his youth and lack of experience may hold back several teams. If he went to the waivers, believe me, he’d be claimed right away, but teams may be a little reluctant to pay for a risk.

And let’s not forget that the Habs won’t be equipped to win major honors in the next two years. So keeping Montembeault would only reduce his value.

In any case, it’s not as if nobody wants his services. The Oilers are reportedly actively looking for a goaltender, and he could well be their solution.

On the other hand, perhaps Kent Hughes is waiting for Montembeault to settle down on the power play before trading him to increase his value.

Well, actually, it’s not all Monty‘s fault, but he’s still been part of the NHL’s highest-scoring power play since Jeff Gorton joined the Habs.

Alexandre Pratt analyzed this data toexplain why the Habs need better d-play guys.

Despite all this, Samuel Montembeault has still allowed 49 shorthanded goals in his last 49 games. That’s something he’s going to have to improve on, becauseconsidering only 5-on-5 play, he’s one of the NHL’s elite.

How much longer can the CH’s three-man goaltending system hold out? Only Kent Hughes can answer that question.

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