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Chris Tanev is driving David Savard’s value through the roof
Credit: Photo by André Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images
Last night, the Dallas Stars booked their place in the Western finals by disposing of the Avalanche. They had to overcome a controversial overtime decision, but in the end, Matt Duchene gave his team the win.

In the end, the puck didn’t lie.

Of course, there’s been a lot of talk about Wyatt Johnston and the many fine young players in Dallas, but there’s one guy whose impact is being overlooked at the moment: Chris Tanev.

At the trade deadline, the Stars gave away a second-round pick, a defensive prospect (Artem Grushnikov) and a conditional third-round pick for a defenseman who, ideally, would solidify the team’s brigade.

And when you look at what the defenseman did in the first two rounds, you see that at 5-on-5, he completely muzzled opposing top players, whether it was Jack Eichel in Vegas or Nathan MacKinnon in Colorado. The Stars scored six goals and allowed just one when Tanev was on the ice against these two guys at 5-on-5, and this in nearly 120 minutes of play.

The defender is a monster in his zone, and he’s not afraid to sacrifice his body by blocking shots.

His dental health bears witness to this.

But clearly, seeing Tanev have such a big series makes the Stars think they’ve sniffed out a bargain by acquiring the defenseman… and at the same time, he’s driving David Savard’s value sky-high.

Remember that at the last trade deadline, there was a lot of talk about Tanev being a match for Savard in terms of the return the Habs could get. In the end, the Flames didn’t get a ton in return for the defenseman’s services, so Kent Hughes took advantage of the fact that his defenseman had another year left on his contract and didn’t want to leave Montreal to decide to keep him.

However, next year may be different, and with Tanev making a huge difference in Dallas, it’s safe to assume that other teams will be looking for “their Chris Tanev”, either this summer or at the next trade deadline.

If the Habs are in the playoff hunt come March, they won’t be trading Savard. That said, if the playoffs seem unattainable, Savard will become a rental player, and Tanev’s solid performances this spring mean that the Habs will be able to use Tanev’s case to entice clubs to pay top dollar if they want Savard.

And if the Stars win the Stanley Cup with Tanev continuing to play inspired hockey, it will only help Kent Hughes’ case… if he decides to trade his defenseman, of course.

In a gaggle

– Interesting stuff.

– He’s right.

– Read more.

– And the man in the front row could be out in a matter of hours…

– This story continues to grow.

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