NHL Trade Rumors: 5 Trade Targets Named For Montreal Canadiens


The Montreal Canadiens have made it clear that offensive talent and some physicality need to be added to the roster going forward, and that's what GM Kent Hughes will be focusing on this summer.

And while adding some toughness and grit can be addressed on the free agent market, Kevin Dube and Benoit Rioux of TVA Sports have named five top "attacking" trade targets — all of them having underperformed their potential upside thus far in their careers, and therefore might be able to be pried loose for a reasonable trade cost.

Jack Quinn, Buffalo Sabres

Quinn makes the list because the Sabres are just overloaded with young forward talent, and may find it within them to spare Quinn, who hasn't played a major role for them yet. The former No. 8 overall pick in the draft (2020) missed much of his sophomore season this year due to Achilles and leg injuries, but still managed 19 points in 27 games when he did play.

Alexander Holtz, New Jersey Devils

Dube and Rioux then looked one spot up in that 2020 Draft and spotted Holtz, another underachiever of sorts. In his first full season in the NHL, the 22-year-old didn't exactly get a fair shake from former NJ Devils head coach Lindy Ruff, getting just 11:38 of ice time per night. He still managed 16 goals however, and might still be able to untap his offensive potential.

Arthur Kaliyev, Los Angeles Kings

As a pending restricted free agent, it appeared that the Kings would be trading the underachieving 22-year-old at the deadline, but they still might revisit that once the season is done.

Kaapo Kakko, New York Rangers

Another name that was bandied about at the trade deadline, the former second overall pick (2019) has also been an underachiever with untapped upside, and is another pending RFA. The Habs' VP of hockey operations, Jeff Gorton, was the Rangers GM who actually selected Kakko with that No. 2 pick back in '19. 

Payton Krebs, Buffalo Sabres

Another Sabre wraps up the list. Krebs is also a former first-rounder who hasn't lived up to his potential, and also an RFA that the Habs could swoop in on. Krebs has had three fairly underwhelming seasons since being selected with the 17th overall pick in 2019 by the Vegas Golden Knights. With Buffalo, he's settled in as more of an energy player with some physicality, rather than a top-six contributor. 

All of these potential trade targets could potentially be had for a price tag that comes in cheaper than the draft position used to obtain them would suggest. 

Photo: © Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports