Creating the Kraken: a mock Seattle expansion draft

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PensBurgh 19 July, 2021 - 05:06am 8 views

Why did Montreal not protect price?

Price had to waive the no-movement clause in his contract for the Canadiens to leave him unprotected. He only waived the no-movement clause for the expansion draft, meaning the Kraken can't select Price and then trade him to another team without the goalie's consent. Montreal GazetteCanadiens leave Carey Price unprotected for Seattle expansion draft

When are the NHL protected lists released?

Starting at 10 AM ET on Sunday, when the NHL will make the protection lists public, the Kraken will have a window to negotiate with and sign any (un)restricted free agents who are unprotected from their 2020-21 team. novacapsfans.comThe Capitals’ Protection List For The 2021 NHL Expansion Draft

How many players can the Kraken take from each team?

The Kraken can only select one player per team. In addition to choosing from players that the other teams left unprotected for the expansion draft, the Kraken also can sign any unprotected unrestricted free agent before Wednesday's draft. NBC Sports Boston2021 NHL Expansion Draft: List of best players exposed to Kraken

Why is Vegas exempt from expansion draft?

The Vegas Golden Knights were exempt due to their expansion agreement when they entered the league. The 30 teams could each submit a list with one of two options for protection. One option was to protect seven forwards, three defensemen, and one goalie. DraftKings NationNHL Expansion Draft 2021: Protected lists and all available players for Seattle Kraken

Taking a Krak (get it?) at creating a Seattle expansion team from scratch with the real protection lists

My main goal was to create a competitive team, however the Kraken have a blank slate financially against the salary cap, in a climate where the cap is likely to remain flat for years to come. Therefore, I made it a priority to consider how to position my team for the future and try to maintain maximum flexibility in the years to come.

Some rules to remember: Seattle must take at least 20 players under contract next season (my team has 22), and a minimum of 14 forwards, nine defensemen and three goalies. They must take between 60-100% of the salary cap (minimum of $48.9 million, maximum of $81.5 million) and cannot buy anyone out until next summer.

Here are my choices with the reasoning why:

Anaheim - forward Alex Volkov: he’s young (23), makes league minimum (being under contract is a nice perk) and has shown some upside in the AHL. The Ducks don’t have a lot to chose from, and Seattle will need some youth, possibly for the AHL.

Arizona - forward Christan Fischer: much like above, Fischer is young (24), relatively inexpensive (one year at $1.0m), has good size (6’2, 215) and is an NHL caliber player with already 265 games under his belt. He hasn’t shown much offensive upside, but maybe getting out of Arizona helps. If not, we can move on after one year.

Boston - defenseman Connor Clifton: he’s somewhat young (26, noticing a trend?), has a team-friendly contract (two years at $1.0m) and is a right shot defenseman with probably his best days still ahead.

Buffalo - defenseman Will Borgen: another young (24), a RFA, big (6’3, 205) right shot defender. Maybe he’s back in the AHL for this season, which is OK. Not like Buffalo has much to offer.

Calgary - defenseman Mark Giordano: I’m breaking a lot of my own rules and vision to add an old (38) and expensive ($6.75 million cap hit) player, but Giordano is worth it because he’s going to add leadership to what will be a very young team and be a captain, and he still played 22 minutes per game last season, and performed pretty well. Plus he only has one year left on his deal.

Calgary - defenseman Dougie Hamilton: my first bold move, I’m going to try to sign Dougie Hamilton this week. Give him a long-term deal worth up to $8 million. He’s a big right-handed shot that will produce points and run the power play and be a top pair player for years to come.

Chicago - goaltender Collin Delia: there’s not much to pick from here, so I’ll just take a guy who at least is under contract but only for one year at $1.0m that can (and will) be totally buried in the AHL with no cap impact. Delia is great for my purposes as a No. 4 goalie in the organization.

Colorado - forward Joonas Donskoi: over the last two seasons with the Avs Donskoi has 64 total points in 115 games. Add in a reasonable $3.9 million cap hit for two seasons and he’s a solid add to the middle of my lineup.

Columbus - forward Max Domi: he’s expensive at $5.3 million, but only has one year left on his deal. He’s still only 26 and scored 72 points in 82 games just a few seasons ago in 2018-19. Plus he played center a bit more in Columbus, and young, legit NHL scoring line centers are rare to find in the expansion draft, so I’ll happily scoop Domi here.

Dallas - defenseman Niklas Hansson: who? Yeah, that’s the point. He’s an RFA we can sign for minor league depth, or just let go into the wind. Nothing really catches interest from Dallas’ available list.

Detroit - defenseman Troy Stecher: an NHL caliber right shot d-man who is young enough (27) and has a favorable enough salary ($1.7 for one season) that could make him a trade candidate this summer for a team that might need a fairly cheap player.

Edmonton - forward Seth Griffith: not much to write home about, but he’s signed for a buriable amount, he’s ending up in the AHL. Not like Edmonton has much open that I want.

Florida - goalie Chris Driedger: he’ll need to be signed this week, but he played really well last year and should at least a platoon goalie for me.

Los Angeles - forward Blake Lizzote: At 23 maybe he’s a call up option, but he’s young, cheap and deeper depth.

Minnesota - goalie Kaapo Kahkonen: he’s still able to not need waivers, so he’s a candidate to be goalie of the future.

Montreal - defenseman Cale Fleury: A 22 year old right shot defender with upside is my pick here. Carey Price has to be heavily considered, but a 34-year old with some recent injuries and $10.5 million for five years is just too against the strategy that I want to employ, so I will stay true to it and resist the temptation to make the big swing for Price.

Nashville - forward Calle Jarnkrok: A good and very versatile forward that can play any of the three forward spots and chip in some offense on a good contract ($2.0m for one year) is the play here.

New Jersey - defenseman Connor Carrick: he’s an impending free agent, and I’m probably not signing him. Just a flush pick since NJ doesn’t have too much I’m interested in — including P.K Subban and his massive $9.0m cap hit. Already have Hamilton for that role.

New York Islanders - defenseman Sebastien Aho: a young, mostly minor league dman who is under contract and has some ability to play a bigger role.

New York Rangers - forward Julien Gauthier: he’s only 24 and hasn’t really taken off in his NHL career yet, but is cheap and big (6’4, 227) and under contract, so why not?

Ottawa Senators - forward Jonathan Davidsson: who? Exactly. He’s not under contract so we can keep the 24-year old for the AHL team or just let him float off into the nether just the same. Considered taking Evgenii Dadonov, but he has a $5.0m cap hit and two more seasons, and at age-32 is just a bit too far outside of my ideal vision for this team to take. Second guessing that a bit, but alas, I’d rather save the cap space because I’ve got some big ticket forwards still to come.

Philadelphia Flyers - forward James van Riemsdyk: Breaking my trend to take an older (32), expensive forward ($7.0m) because it’s only two years left and JvR has been very productive and consistent over his career for scoring 50-60 points in normal seasons and is usually a player you can pencil in for 25+ goals in a full campaign.

Pittsburgh Penguins - defenseman Marcus Pettersson: I’ll trust Pettersson’s exceptional metrics, even if his contract ($4.025 for four seasons) is rich, because he’s young. His problem has been one of confidence and usage, which are very easy variables to change with a change of scenery.

San Jose Sharks - forward Dylan Gambrell: young enough (25), signed for cheap for one year and does have 23 points in 99 games in the NHL in the last two seasons. Enough to check some boxes and move on.

St. Louis Blues - forward Vladimir Tarasenko: A huge swing here to take a front line player coming off a few shoulder surgeries. But goals have to come from somewhere, and Tarasenko’s contract ($7.5m for two) is the type of high-risk, high-reward selection I haven’t made too often, but could pay off.

Tampa Bay Lightning - forward Yanni Gourde: Don’t love the contract ($5.1m for four) but adding a high-end center is too much to pass up. A great all-around player who will help out and produce a lot of points in a big role.

Toronto Maple Leafs - forward Jared McCann: A point producing 25 year old on a great contract ($2.94m for one)? Yep, I’ll take McCann here.

Vancouver Canucks - forward Jonah Gadjovich: another “who” type pick. He’s only 23 and was a former second round pick who has some size (6’2, 210) so this is an AHL player that I’ll stash away and hope develops.

Washington Capitals - goalie Vitek Vanecek: Only 25 years old, played 37 NHL games fairly well last season and the price ($716k for one) is right.

Winnipeg Jets - forward Mason Appleton: Fairly young (25), scored 23 points and adds some size and skating ability on another sweetheart of a deal ($900k for one).

Graphically here’s how my team stacks up:

More importantly, my Kraken only have $28.5 million tied to 2022-23 salaries (though again, it doesn’t have my Hamilton/Driedger extensions). I will have a lot of players to re-sign or replace (Domi, McCann, Appleton, Vanecek, etc) but all the room in the world to do so.

Even better, I’ll only have four players (Gourde, Pettersson, Hamilton and Driedger) under contract after two years when looking ahead for 2023-24. That maintains my expansion team as a blank canvas to continue to exploit other team’s salary cap issues and be able to accumulate high-end talent in the years to come, much the same idea that had Vegas end up collecting players/talent like Mark Stone, Alex Pietrangelo and Max Pacioretty.

And here’s what an early look of my lines could be:

My team could use some center depth, a free agent like Nick Bonino, Alex Wennberg, Mikael Granlund, Brandon Sutter or Tyler Bozak would make a lot of sense to add for a one-year patch.

If we’re feeling feisty a LD free agent add could round out the team. A veteran option for play and leadership like Keith Yandle, Alex Goligoski, Ryan Suter or Alex Edler on a short deal also would fit in quite nicely. With all those candidates and my cap room, adding one of them feels very practical and possible.

The JFresh projection has me at a 100 point season — and it doesn’t include the inputs of my new center, and more importantly adding a top pair defensemen. Those moves that will push me well into the 105+ point range.

Seattle is in the West division with Anaheim, Calgary, Edmonton, LA, San Jose, Vancouver and Vegas. All we have to do is finish top three to guarantee a playoff spot, and other than Vegas the rest of the division isn’t terribly strong.

The one point this exercise certainly shows is no matter what decisions the Kraken elect to do, it should be pretty easy for them to create a team that has a serious shot at 100+ points next season and a path to glide into the playoffs in their inaugural season.

Read full article at PensBurgh

The most intriguing players available to Seattle Kraken in the expansion draft

Yahoo Sports 19 July, 2021 - 12:10pm

Dan Wetzel, Pat Forde, Pete Thamel

There were certainly some surprises from certain NHL franchises, which will make the July 21 event must-watch television for a number of fanbases.

Here are the most intriguing players left exposed to the Kraken.

After being the driving force for the Montreal Canadiens’ run to the Stanley Cup final, it’s a little shocking to see general manager Marc Bergevin expose Carey Price to the Kraken, creating a scenario that invites the possibility of Price never playing for the Habs again.

But, of course, this will all depend on how willing Seattle is to assume the netminder’s exorbitant contract. With an impressive .924 save percentage in the playoffs, Price showed that when he’s on his game, there are very few goalies better than him. The issue with Price, however, is that he’s posted a save percentage better than .910 just once over the past four regular seasons, making his lofty cap hit a bit of a gamble for the Kraken’s front office. A player of Price's pedigree, however, would be a major marketing asset to a team looking to attract fans in year one.

In a very shocking turn of events, the Colorado Avalanche couldn’t come to terms on a new contract and have left captain Gabriel Landeskog unprotected. This means the Kraken have exclusive recruiting rights to the 2011 second-overall pick ahead of the NHL’s July 28 start date for free agency.

With its exclusive bargaining rights, Seattle has until Wednesday to ink Landeskog to a contract, and landing someone like the Avs forward would be a major get. At 28, he’s still in the prime of his career and has been a relied upon contributor for Colorado, netting 75 goals and 171 points over the past three seasons. The leadership he could bring to a franchise in its infancy is also a major draw, as Landeskog has been the captain of the Avalanche since he was 19 years and 286 days old, making him the second-youngest captain in NHL history.

It’ll be a potentially precipitous ending for Vladimir Tarasenko with the St. Louis Blues. The Russian scorer has played just 34 games over the past two seasons while dealing with multiple shoulder ailments. Once a player that pulled off five-straight 30-plus goal seasons, there are concerns that Tarasenko’s best days are behind him, even at just 29 years old.

While his cap hit is certainly on the higher side, the fact that there’s just two years left on the deal could be enough for the Kraken to take a chance on Tarasenko. If he is able to return to form, that contract could wind up being a nice value, but that’s a pretty big ‘if’ at this point.

Jared McCann not being protected by the Toronto Maple Leafs is extremely puzzling considering the team literally traded for the centre on Saturday. Immediately, he becomes the most intriguing member of the Maple Leafs available to the Kraken, a move that doesn’t reflect strongly on the organization.

At 25, McCann is entering his prime. In 2021-22, the 2014 first-round pick showed well. He finished with the highest goals-per-game (.33) and points-per-game (.74) marks of his career. Picking largely from players approaching or past 30 years of age, McCann is an intriguing, younger option for the Kraken.

Ondrej Palat was given heightened responsibilities this past regular season, filling in on the Tampa Bay Lightning’s first line while Nikita Kucherov missed all 56 games. The Bolts were rewarded for their trust in Palat, as the 2011 seventh-round pick recorded 15 goals and 46 points — averaging 0.84 points-per-game, tying a career-best mark. He remained on Tampa’s first line en route to the team’s second-straight Stanley Cup during the postseason.

While Palat certainly benefited from playing with the likes of Kucherov, Brayden Point and Steven Stamkos, he’s proven that he can be an effective talent both offensively and physically. Since becoming an everyday NHL player in 2013-14, the Czech has dished out 930 hits, placing him 41st amongst all forwards during that span.

Buried in a pretty forgettable season for the Philadelphia Flyers was a nice little campaign for James van Riemsdyk. The veteran forward posted a 0.77 points-per-game mark, the highest of his career. Additionally, he finished with 26 assists, the most he’s recorded in a season since 2016-17 when he was still a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

At this point, van Riemsdyk probably won’t return much value on his cap hit, but last year’s performance showed that he can still be an effective player.

The Lightning are certainly an intriguing team for the Kraken to target in the expansion draft. It’s important to remember that Seattle must select one player from each team, but there are a number of solid options to choose from when it comes to the defending back-to-back champs.

Most of the other forwards on this list are wingers while Gourde is a centre, something that could push him up the team’s priority list. His 0.64 points-per-game during the 2020-21 season was the second-best mark of his career, but the middleman is mostly known for getting under the opposing squad’s skin. Gourde’s ability to agitate and compete could help make the Kraken a hard team to play against.

Being in an organization absolutely loaded with defensive talent, ice time in the NHL has been hard to come by for Cal Foote. The 2017 first-round pick has played 35 games in the big leagues, with all coming this past season. Foote was limited to just 12:53 in average time-on-ice in his appearances with the Lightning in 2021-22, something that would certainly increase if he were to join the Kraken.

Foote is a defenseman that can hold his own at both ends of the ice, as evidenced by his 59 points across two campaigns in the AHL and a 57-point year with the Kelowna Rockets in the Western Hockey League. With it being a relatively weak group of defensive players to choose from, Foote may be the player Seattle poaches from the Bolts.

Jordan Eberle was left unprotected by the New York Islanders, making him a potential option for Seattle. Eberle’s offensive totals have mostly dipped since the forward joined the Isles, but that can be excused by the fact that he’s part of a defense-first New York team led by Barry Trotz. If Eberle were to join the Kraken, it wouldn’t be shocking if he returned to being a 20-25 goal-scorer.

His contract isn’t egregiously bad, and I don’t think it’d get in the way of Seattle adding Eberle to the squad.

Seattle will have a difficult decision to make when it comes to selecting a player from the Blues. Both Tarasenko and Vince Dunn are available, putting a number of factors into play. Position scarcity will certainly be important to consider for the Kraken, as the pool of available defensemen certainly isn’t as fruitful as the list of unprotected wingers.

Dunn has shown flashes of stellar play in the offensive zone for St. Louis, but overall consistency and responsibility at the defensive end of the ice has lacked from his game. He was benched by head coach Craig Berube this past season and his name has swirled around in trade rumours in the past. Dunn’s proven to be a talented, yet volatile, player. The upside may be worth taking a risk on.

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Ron Francis is on the clock. The Seattle Kraken's general manager gets to pick 30 players in the expansion draft to build out the roster for the NHL's 32nd franchise. Francis has some big decisions to make on how many big-money stars and their sizeable contracts to take on, what risks to take on younger, less-proven players and which side deals are worth it to stockpile assets as the Vegas Golden Knights did at their expansion draft in 2017.

The Golden Knights do not need to expose any players to the Kraken.

The cliche goes that “defense wins championships.” And that seems to be part of the Lightning’s mentality ahead of Wednesday’s expansion draft. The Lightning, who are coming off their second straight Stanley Cup title run, opted to shield their defensive core from the Seattle Kraken while leaving some key veteran forwards exposed. Players with no move clauses automatically made the protected ...

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Kraken could find Fleury-like impact in NHL Expansion Draft

NHL.com 18 July, 2021 - 11:00pm

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The Vegas Golden Knights weren't looking for a face. They were looking for 23 faces, 23 members of a new team in a new city, ready to welcome new fans to the Vegas Golden Knights and the NHL.

When the Golden Knights selected Marc-Andre Fleury from the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2017 NHL Expansion Draft, the goalie who would come to symbolize and spur on Vegas in its first season and beyond, they found a player who was equally important for the fans and the players to latch onto. 

The question is whether the Seattle Kraken, in the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft presented by Upper Deck on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; ESPN2, SN1, SN NOW), can replicate that. 

"It really all depends on who's available and who we can pick, but we certainly think there's going to be some good players available," Kraken general manager Ron Francis said Saturday. "Hopefully when they get selected here, we can get them into town and walk out on the stage and they can become the early faces of our Seattle Kraken lineup."

There are options for the Kraken. With the protected lists for NHL teams except the Golden Knights being revealed Sunday, there are names that jump out as potential Fleury-like faces.

It starts with Carey Price, the goalie for the Montreal Canadiens. Price is a native of Anahim Lake, British Columbia who would slot perfectly into the Fleury role after helping the Canadiens to the Stanley Cup Final, where they lost in five games to the Tampa Bay Lightning. 

He's not the only one. There's St. Louis Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko, Calgary Flames captain Mark Giordano, Philadelphia Flyers forward James van Riemsdyk and New Jersey Devils defenseman P.K. Subban, among others. 

"With COVID and the flat [NHL salary] cap for the next however many years, it might not be so hard for Seattle to find that guy," said Deryk Engelland, the Las Vegas resident who was signed as a free agent by the Golden Knights and counted as the Flames' pick in the expansion draft. 

"There's a lot of teams that are right at the cap ceiling and [who have] guys to sign, so I think they're going to be able to put together a team that competes. And that's what you want."

Whether Vegas and general manager George McPhee were seeking a face, they found one in Fleury, a player whose humble demeanor, talent and chops -- he had, after all, won the Stanley Cup three times -- combined to become a powerful motivator for a band of misfits, and at the same time he was willing to do countless interviews, reach out to the community, rarely tiring, rarely saying no. 

"We weren't necessarily looking for a face of the franchise," McPhee said. "We felt the face of the franchise should be our logo. And we were very team centric. We didn't name a captain. We tried to have 23 captains. We treated everyone the same. There wasn't a hierarchy. 

"What we were trying to get was some leadership in the players we were acquiring, and Marc-Andre certainly had that and lots of talent and lots of game left. It wasn't by design, but he became the face of the franchise organically."

It helped that Fleury was the most recognizable name, most recognizable face, playing a premium position, one that McPhee called the most important in creating a team from scratch. He was known in ways that others who became stars on that team, say William Karlsson or Jonathan Marchessault, might not have. 

"He was the only star that people had an idea about then," said former Golden Knights forward Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, now playing for the Colorado Avalanche. "It was 'Flower.' Everybody else, I mean, it's like people had no clue who we were."

There's no question that the veneration, even now, even from players no longer with the organization, is real and tangible. Players from the 2017-18 Golden Knights, the inaugural team that made it to the Stanley Cup Final before losing to the Washington Capitals in five games, speak about Fleury in glowing terms, the admiration thick for what he did on the ice and off the ice. 

He set the tone and took the heat. 

"From a marketing standpoint, I think they leaned on him a whole lot the first year," said defenseman Nate Schmidt, now with the Vancouver Canucks. "And it kind of takes the pressure off of a lot of other guys, which is honestly really nice. A lot less pressure, a lot less pressure on us to perform because he's the guy, but he's kind of immune to those things, which is impressive, honestly."

Fleury, of course, had just lost his job with the Penguins to Matt Murray and was left unprotected, allowed to be selected by the Golden Knights. And yet, Bellemare said, he never complained, always worked the hardest, always smiled, helping create a team culture that endures. 

"He's your superstar," Bellemare said. "You come into a brand-new team so everybody can become a superstar, and it could go really fast that you end up with guys that think they're better than they are. And you have to be careful. 

"But the thing with Flower is that he was our top player, our biggest superstar and he was the most humble guy also. So then whoever comes second or third or fourth or even 19th, whatever your name is, he can't come and be cocky."

That made Fleury the face for the fans and his teammates, the backbone and soul of a team that accomplished more than anyone thought they could, and that will be difficult for the Kraken to replicate. But there is a blueprint, and players who would fit nicely into the mold that Fleury filled for Vegas. 

"You certainly look at what they did because of the success they had, but as we've pointed out numerous times this is going to be different," Francis said. 

"I think they can take a lot from what we did, and will," McPhee said. "And I do believe the pandemic is going to help them a lot. There are GMs who have been through this once on the other side. They may be a little more shrewd. 

"On the other hand, the flat cap is going to be hard on some teams and they're going to be looking for a way out. It's something that Seattle could take advantage of. We expect that Seattle is going to do very, very well and have a very good, competitive team, right off the bat."

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Montreal Canadiens: Exposing Carey Price to Expansion Is A Fireable Offence

A Winning Habit 18 July, 2021 - 12:00am

Jul 7, 2021; Tampa, Florida, USA; Montreal Canadiens Carey Price. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

The Montreal Canadiens had to send in their protection list for the upcoming expansion draft yesterday evening.

They can protect either seven forwards, three defenceman and a goaltender or eight skaters and a goaltender. There has been plenty of debate about the forwards that they may protect, and some disagreement on what defencemen they should keep (that was before Shea Weber was ruled out).

The one constant was that the most obvious player to protect was their star goaltender Carey Price. However, it sounds like that may not have been a slam dunk among Habs management for some reason.

There was plenty of trade chatter and some player movement before the roster freeze set in, but the Canadiens were silent. Then, shortly after the protection lists were sent in to the league, Frank Seravalli, the former TSN Hockey Insider, dropped a bomb on his followers on Twitter when he suggested the Canadiens had discussed asking Carey Price to waive his no-movement clause ahead of the expansion draft.

There is no word on #Habs’ final protection list, but multiple sources say Canadiens at least discussed the idea of Carey Price waiving his no-move clause for exposure in #SeaKraken Expansion Draft over the last 24 hours.

We’ll see when the lists are revealed on Sunday.

— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) July 17, 2021

Pierre Lebrun of TSN quickly followed with a more convincing statement that Price has indeed waived his no movement clause and won’t be protected in the expansion draft.

This is among the worst decisions a general manager has made in the history of the National Hockey League.

Carey Price is signed to a large contract that has him earning a cap hit of $10.5 million for the next five seasons. He is already 33 years old so there is some argument that he won’t be able to live up to the big money on the contract in the future.

In fact, there has been plenty of debate over the first three years of the deal whether a goaltender is worth that much money in a salary cap world.

Then, Carey Price went out in the last two playoffs and showed he is absolutely worth the money he is being paid. In ten postseason games a year ago he had a 1.78 GAA and a .936 SV% against the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers. This year, Price helped lead the Canadiens to the Stanley Cup Final with a 2.27 GAA and a .924 SV%.

If being a brick wall in the postseason with consistency doesn’t make him worth protecting in the expansion draft, what would?

Price has plenty of reason to want to play in the Seattle area and the team have plenty of reason to want the former Hart Trophy and likely starter for Canada at next year’s Olympics.

Price was raised on the west coast of Canada in Anahim Lake, British Columbia. His wife, Angela, is from Washington state, just a few hour drive away from Seattle. The two met when Price was playing for the Tai-City Americans of the Western Hockey League as a Junior.

Does he want to go finish his career closer to home and much closer to his wife’s home? Where his children can visit their grandparents far more often? Of course that would be attractive to him and his family.

Is Habs general manager Marc Bergevin doing Price a favour by allowing him this opportunity to play close to home? Perhaps.

But has Bergevin heard of the idea of making a trade?

Price just played his heart out in carrying the Canadiens past the Toronto Maple Leafs in the first round of the playoffs. He didn’t carry the team past the Winnipeg Jets or Vegas Golden Knights, but he was excellent in rounds two and three after being the unquestioned team MVP by a mile in round one. Without Price’s heroics in the postseason, the Canadiens lose in five games in the first round.

The same could have been said a year ago. They have no chance against the Penguins without Price playing unbelievable.

And now, when he has finally proven to be worth that huge contract that so many said should never be given to a goaltender, he’s going to walk away for nothing?

That’s inexcusable. Bergevin can’t allow Price, the all-time wins leader in the lengthy, illustrious history of Canadiens goaltending to walk away for nothing in return.

Want your voice heard? Join the A Winning Habit team!

At least the Canadiens got Martin Rucinsky, Andrei Kovalenko and Jocelyn Thibault for Patrick Roy. Getting nothing for a franchise superstar is grounds for dismissal.

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