All eyes may be on Canucks’ captain Bo Horvat in Vancouver - or all around the NHL trade market for that matter - there is another player gaining ground in trade chatter.
Forward Brock Boeser is also gaining attention on the trade block especially since the Montreal Canadiens had previous interest for him. Canucks insider Rick Dhaliwal reported how the Habs’ interest in Boeser goes back to former GM Marc Bergevin. He apparently offered defenseman Alexander Romanov (now with the New York Islanders) and a draft pick and was even willing to take back a bad contract in return. However, then-Canucks GM Jim Benning refused.
We now wonder if Bergevin’s successor Kent Hughes would go again after Boeser. The young winger currently earns an annual cap hit of $6.65 million through 2024-25.
This could be an issue for Hughes and the Canadiens, who need to leave room on their payroll when the time comes to re-sign Cole Caufield, who is coming off his entry-level deal next summer and is in line for a substantial raise. It has been said by a few insiders that the Canucks could have difficulty moving Boeser without withholding 20 to 30 percent of his contract.
And Dhaliwal believes the Canadiens might have a good return to offer Vancouver.
“Someone told me the Canadiens and Canucks talked a few weeks ago, he said. “This is me purely speculating, but Sean Monahan, the contract, is exactly the type of contract the Canucks would find attractive in a Brock Boeser trade. One year left, 6.3 million, guys. Monahan is having a decent season with the Habs.”
It could work. The Canadiens have been looking at different ways of fixing voids up front and the acquisition of Boeser would certainly help.
Sure, the Canadiens’ interest in Boeser is longstanding, but let’s see how serious it is as the March 3 deadline nears.