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The Canadian has 12 picks for next year’s draft
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot

What does a rebuilding team do with its draft picks? No, they don’t trade them; they accumulate them so they can build a better roster in the future. In short, a rebuilding team is often willing to sacrifice its present in order to hope for a better future in a few years.

We can therefore conclude that a team that accumulates draft picks is a rebuilding team. If A = B, B = A.

Some fans would like to see the Habs emerge from their rebuild, but we’re not there yet. With the contracts of Dvorak, Armia, Gallagher, Price, Anderson, Allen and Petry still on the team’s payroll, it’s obvious that the push for the Cup will have to wait.

That’s why Kent Hughes and Jeff Gorton have been relatively quiet in recent weeks. They’ve made only one transaction involving an NHL player… and that was Johnathan Kovacevic, who was sent to New Jersey in return for a fourth-round pick in 2026.

At best, the Canadiens will attempt to emerge from their rebuild next summer, having “been in the mix” in 2024-25.

The Habs spoke 10 times in the seven rounds of the last draft in Vegas. It started the weekend with 12 picks, but two of those were traded to move up.

Now, the Habs also have (already) 12 draft picks for the 2025 auction… including seven in the first three rounds. I was able to find this information on PuckPedia, a legitimate alternative to the now-defunct CapFriendly site, which was shut down yesterday by the Capitals.

(Credit: PuckPedia)

Knowing that the Habs could be tempted to trade a veteran or two at the next trade deadline, the Montreal team could therefore attack the next draft with even more picks than they had this year. It’s a far cry from the years when Marc Bergevin only gave Trevor Timmins five or six (mostly distant) picks

Yes, the Habs are still rebuilding, whatever some people may say.

On the other hand, I think this will be the last year that Martin Lapointe and Nick Bobrov will have so many picks to prepare. And I also think that some picks will be traded to move up in the draft and/or to get a Kirby Dach 3.0.

As I wrote a few days ago , the rebuild is pretty much complete on the blue line. All that’s left is to wait… and above all, to complete the rebuild up front.

While we’re on the subject of the next draft, Vincent Duquette of the Journal de Montréal had some fun compiling a list of the 20 2025-eligible prospects he found most interesting.

James Hagens, Porter Martone and Anton Frondell are on his podium. Russia’s Ivan Ryabkin is fourth.

It will be interesting to see where the Habs, who may be keen to change stages in their rebuild, will be talking come June.

2025 will probably be the last year that hope-oriented websites and podcasts will be able to kasher ; at some point, it’s the team’s victory and its performance on the ice that will have to attract attention and give fans emotions. Not the hope of maybe one day managing to win…

In Overtime

– Jesse Marsch looks good on the Canadian team (even though he’s American).

– The Lightning have signed one of the two players they acquired in the Mikhail Sergachev deal.

– Another NHL signing…

– Canada could have an advantage in the small final, although Davies seems to have injured his ankle.

– Another nomination in Carolina.

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