Skip to content
Future #1 goalie: “It would be crazy to dismiss the best 5v5 in the NHL,” says Kent Hughes
Yesterday, the Canadiens announced that they had reached an agreement with Samuel Montembeault on the terms of a contract extension. The goaltender has signed a three-year pact (starting next season) that will pay him an average of $3.15 million per year.

All in all, it was a good deal for everyone. The Quebecer bought himself a little stability, while the CH took the gamble of having a good goalie at a modest salary for three years.

So, this morning, Montembeault and Kent Hughes spoke to the media (they did it together), and of course, Hughes was asked about the future he sees for the Quebec goaltender.

And the famous question of the future #1 goalie came up again.

To this one, Hughes remained cautious, but was clear on one thing: if Montembeault has the level, he’ll be the club’s #1 goalie in the future.

It would be crazy to dismiss the best 5v5 goalie in the league right now. – Kent Hughes, on Samuel Montembeault

Speaking of “the best 5v5 goalie in the league”, Hughes is referring to the fact that at even strength, few (if any) goalies are as effective as Montembeault is this season across the NHL. It’s harder for the Quebecer when he’s short-handed (and the club doesn’t help him there), but at 5v5, he’s on a par with the likes of Jeremy Swayman, Linus Ullmark, Igor Shesterkin and Ilya Sorokin in 2022-23.

And I’m not exaggerating: the figures point in that direction.

The three-goalie rotation (which, according to Hughes, isn’t necessarily “unfair” to all three, considering that Montembeault was able to sign a big contract and Cayden Primeau is getting his chance in the NHL) makes it hard to know whether Monty would be as effective if he had the real workload of a #1 goalie, but the current signs are encouraging.

Hughes also praised the Quebecer’s consistency of progression since arriving in Montreal, a rare aspect among goalkeepers. The GM knows that it’s difficult to predict consistency among goalies in the league, and the fact that he has one who is consistent in his backyard is worth a lot.

Montembeault is also proud of his progress and consistency, always ready to help his club win.

Montembeault isn’t perfect, but at least we know what to expect from him… and it’s usually good things.

The Quebecer seemed genuinely happy that the matter was settled, and after proving that he deserves his place in the NHL, he now wants to prove that he deserves to stay.

And with a nice contract in his pocket, he can now concentrate 100% on that.

In bursts

– I like the comparison.

– A day to remember.

– A name to watch.

– Wow.

– Will the two guys be able to support him adequately, though?

More Content