The Montreal Canadiens are in full rebuild mode.
The Canadiens traded captain Max Pacioretty to the Vegas Golden Knights, the team announced Monday morning. In return, Vegas sent forwards Tomas Tatar and Nick Suzuki to the Habs, as well as a 2019 second-round draft pick (formerly belonging to Columbus).
It’s another tough move for Canadiens fans to swallow, as this is now the second offseason in which Montreal has traded away a franchise cornerstone. The Habs two summers ago traded defenseman P.K. Subban to the Nashville Predators for D-man Shea Weber.
Montreal, however, did pretty well for itself with the return for Pacioretty. Tatar is usually good for 20 goals per season, and the real centerpiece of the trade for Montreal is Suzuki. The 2017 first-round pick is considered a heady player whose smart brand of play makes up for what he might lack in size in his 5-foot-11, 183-pound frame. Suzuki has posted absurd numbers in the OHL over the last two seasons, totaling 196 points in 129 regular-season games for the Owen Sound Attack.
And obviously, from the Golden Knights’ standpoint, this just solidifies their forward depth after reaching the Stanley Cup Final in their first year of existence. Pacioretty had a down year in 2017-18, scoring just 17 goals with 20 assists in 64 games, but he has been a 30-goal scorer five times during his career.
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