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Daniel Sprong: an interesting option for the Habs
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot
Much to the dismay of some Montreal Canadiens fans, Kent Hughes has been very quiet since his electrifying selection of Ivan Demidov at the June 28 draft.

Indeed, since the NHL draft, apart from the Johnathan Kovacevic transaction and the signing of Alex Barré-Boulet, the Habs general manager has not moved.

For some, this is a mistake, but when you really think about it, doing nothing represents a very good “move” too, especially considering all the huge (and bad?) contracts that were awarded on July 1ᵉʳ.

Still, Kent Hughes isn’t asleep in his office chair just yet.

He reportedly made reasonable offers to Sean Monahan and Jonathan Marchessault, who eventually signed elsewhere.

In short, Hughes is making approaches without compromising his future.

It’s a good idea, but the fact remains that, with a view to next season, most fans and analysts agree that the Habs will need a top-6 forward to start the season.

And if that player isn’t acquired by trade (Patrik Laine or Martin Necas, for example), well, he could be signed on the free agent market.

You’re probably going to tell me that there’s no one left available, but when you look at the remaining names, you realize that there could be a very interesting option for the Tricolore.

I’m talking about 27-year-old forward Daniel Sprong.

Now, I imagine that when you read this name, many of you were thinking, “Who the hell is Daniel Sprong?

Well, Sprong is a Dutch forward, the only player from the Netherlands in the NHL and only the fourth in history, who has been in the NHL for several seasons.

He was drafted 46th overall in 2015 by the Penguins, and since then, he’s never really found his niche in the NHL.

In the past two seasons, however, Sprong has really revealed himself to the public as a solid depth scorer, scoring 21 goals (in 66 games) with the Seattle Kraken in 22-23 and 18 (in 76 games) with the Detroit Red Wings last season).

In total, over the last two seasons, Sprong has accumulated 89 points in 142 games.

That may sound like a lot of production, but when you realize that Sprong accumulated it all while playing an average of less than 12 minutes per game, that’s when it gets interesting.

Sprong was able to score goals and points at a good pace without playing much.

And goals, well, that’s exactly what the Montreal Canadiens need.

Obviously, I’m not saying that Sprong would be a revolutionary acquisition, but I do believe that the Habs could benefit from giving the Dutch forward a small contract.

The more time goes by, the less Sprong will be able to beg for a lot of money and a lot of years, so this is where the Habs could make an excellent signing.

It should also be noted that Sprong ranks 17th in the NHL in points scored per 60 minutes, an increasingly important statistic in the modern NHL.

He averages 3.4 points per 60 minutes, putting him ahead of the likes of Brayden Point, Kirill Kaprizov, Tage Thompson, Kevin Fiala, Aleksander Barkov and Mika Zibanejad, among others.

In short, Sprong may not be the top-6 forward every Habs fan dreams of, but at the end of the day, he would certainly represent a great acquisition for the Habs, and especially a no-risk acquisition that could ultimately pay off handsomely.

If Kent Hughes signs him for a year at a low salary, for example, he could very well be traded at the trade deadline.

Last summer, the Red Wings signed Sprong to a one-year, $2 million contract, and he scored 43 points.

To find out more about Sprong, here’s an excellent article by Colton Osmond of LastWordOnSports.

Overtime

– You’ve got to do it anyway.

– Yzerman’s work in recent years leaves much to be desired compared to his early days at the Wings helm.

– A situation we’ll be keeping a close eye on.

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