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David Pagnotta: Teams continue to call for Arber Xhekaj
Credit: Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

Over the past year, Arber Xhekaj has found himself – in spite of himself – in a number of trade rumors.

Some teams called Kent Hughes to inquire about the defenseman’s availability…

But the Habs’ GM never wanted to trade him.

Just because we don’t hear these rumours anymore doesn’t mean that interest in Xhekaj has waned across the league.

At least, that’s what you might think when you read this sentence, in David Pagnotta’s latest article:

Just this week, teams called the Montreal Canadiens about defenseman Arber Xhekaj, but Tricolore general manager Kent Hughes isn’t interested in trading him. – David Pagnotta

Pagnotta goes on to say that the Habs GM is ready to trade another of his defensemen…

Which leads us to believe that, in Hughes’ eyes, Xhekaj is untouchable :

Kent Hughes seems to really like Xhekaj… And that makes sense.

However, there are two questions I have about all this.

We know that Xhekaj has had two serious shoulder injuries.

That said… Could the Habs be worried about his future in the NHL if he re-injures his shoulder?

And if so, might Kent Hughes be inclined to trade him to maximize his value before it’s “too late”?

Arber Xhekaj has proven that he can be useful to an NHL team because he commands respect on the ice.

We’ve seen how good he is at his best… And that explains why the Habs believe in him so much.

There may be congestion on the blue line, but few defensemen have the impact of Xhekaj in the line-up.

That’s why, in my eyes… The Habs need to take advantage of him as much as possible, even if his value seems to be quite high.

In bursts

– He looks happy to be here!

– I love his attitude.

– He wants to be ready for next season.

– It would make sense.

– Small changes for the Oilers:

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