The Montreal Canadiens will be selected first in the National Hockey League (NHL) draft for the first time since 1980.
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This long-awaited event for fans sometimes becomes the scene of important transactions… but the Habs rarely get involved in them.
Since the start of the millennium, the CH has made five significant trades involving established players over the two days of the repechage. Here is an overview in chronological order.
Mathieu Garon and a third-round pick to the Los Angeles Kings for Radek Bonk and Cristóbal Huet (June 24, 2006)
In his second draft at the helm of the team, general manager Bob Gainey sent in Mathieu Garon, a goaltender from Quebec struggling to establish himself on the Bettman circuit in the California sun. Although Radek Bonk and Cristóbal Huet did not have a long career in the Quebec metropolis, they made their mark there in their own way. The Frenchman maintained a 58-39-9 record with the CH, as well as serving as Carey Price’s first mentor. As for himself, Bonk has served the Habs well as a supporting forward, racking up 44 points in 135 games. For his part, Garon left the Kings organization after two seasons, ultimately playing 341 games in the league.
A first-round pick and a second-round pick to the Calgary Flames by Alex Tanguay and a fifth-round pick (June 20, 2008)
The Canadian has almost always been reluctant to change his first-round picks. Gainey wasn’t wrong, though, when he used the 25th pick in 2008 to get his hands on talented Quebec forward Alex Tanguay. Although he only played 50 regular season games with the CH, plagued by injuries, the Sainte-Justine native proved to be an excellent rental player as he put up 41 points. For their part, the Flames have opted for center Greg Nemisz, who has only played 15 games in the NHL, with the CH team. However, history could have been very different if the Alberta team had taken a chance on a talented defender picked two rows later by the Washington Capitals: John Carlson.
Lars Eller to the Washington Capitals for two second-round picks (June 24, 2016)
Many Habs fans wept with awesomeness when Marc Bergevin got such a comeback for a center who averaged 29 points per 82 NHL games. Although one of the options obtained, transferred to the Edmonton Oilers, finally led to the selection of the American running back Jordan Harris, now considered one of the best hopes of the CH, the “Caps” are winners of this transaction. Eller was an integral part of Washington’s Stanley Cup win in 2018, putting up 18 points in 24 playoff games and taking on significant defensive responsibilities. Aside from Harris, the other two prospects obtained in this transaction, Samuel Houde and Joni Ikonen, will likely never play an NHL game.
Two second-round picks to Chicago Blackhawks for Andrew Shaw (June 24, 2016)
A crowd favorite in Chicago, Shaw arrived in Montreal with two Stanley Cup rings and plenty of character, much to Bergevin’s delight. Plagued by injuries, the winger missed 64 games in three seasons with the Canadiens, before being optioned to the Hawks for a similar comeback in 2019. However, the Illinois team got their hands on sharpshooter Alex DeBrincat in the draft. with the election of the Canadiens. . He is now the best player on the Blackhawks, with a season of 41 goals and 78 points in 2021-2022.
Max Domi and a Columbus Blue Jackets third-round pick for Josh Anderson (October 6, 2020)
If you forgot, the 2020 auction was held in the fall due to the pandemic. The CH took the opportunity to send game maker Max Domi, who had just experienced a precipitous drop in production, to Ohio in exchange for speed trader Josh Anderson. Some 107 games later, the Jackets virtually traded Domi to the Carolina Hurricanes while Anderson established himself as the leader in Montreal. One can question the creativity and consistency of whoever was dubbed the “Power Horse,” but certainly not the team that won this one-sided trade.