Patrik Laine to Montreal: Major development and important statement

David St-Jean
June 14, 2024  (11:41)

Patrik Laine
Photo credit: Yardbarker

Since Wednesday, Patrik Laine's name has been strongly linked to the Canadiens, following confirmation that he has requested a trade.

It hasn't been an easy season for him in Columbus, as he needed the NHL's Player Assistance Program in addition to having questionable performances on the ice.
A Sportsnet journalist delved into the matter and provided a more in-depth analysis of Laine. According to him, one must be cautious with Laine.
«It all depends on the acquisition cost. I don't think it would be too expensive to get Patrik Laine. But it's not always about his impact on the salary cap or what you have to give up in a trade.

It also depends on the risk you take with this player, and not just because he entered the Player Assistance Program, but also what we saw from him on the ice last year. He was benched for a while by Pascal Vincent.

And when he came back to the lineup, it was against Montreal. I was at the game, and the impression he gave me, even though he had a lot to deal with in his personal life, was one of indifference.

He still scored a goal on a breakaway. And it was the kind of game where I thought if I were Pascal Vincent, I would have kept him in the stands.»

- Eric Engels

This says a lot about the player and what he was able to give last year. A change of scenery could benefit him, but it's a risk.
First, the Blue Jackets will not let him go for nothing. He would cost less than Trevor Zegras or Martin Necas, but his salary is concerning.
According to Engels, he should not be the Canadiens' number one priority, nor for other teams.
«That doesn't mean the Habs shouldn't take the risk, because if it doesn't work out, you let him go in two years.

However, it could also be a risk that pays off tremendously, especially if it doesn't cost much to acquire him. Should he be the Canadiens' top target? I don't think so. But I don't think he's out of the equation either.»

- Eric Engels

Therefore, Laine can be considered a consolation prize. If Kent Hughes is unable to acquire a forward via trade, he could always turn to the Finn.
The Canadiens already have Brendan Gallagher and Josh Anderson, who are very costly for their performance. Adding an $8.7 million salary without consistent performance could be catastrophic for the rebuild.
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Patrik Laine to Montreal: Major development and important statement

In your opinion, should Kent Hughes stay away from Patrik Laine without even considering him?

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