Canadiens Acquire Drouin From Lightning
The Montreal Canadiens acquired left wing Jonathan Drouin and a conditional sixth-round pick in 2018 from the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for defenseman Mikhail Sergachev and a conditional second-round selection in 2018.
If Sergachev plays more than 40 regular-season games next season for the Lightning, no picks will be exchanged.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: For the second straight year, Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin pulls off a significant deal in June. Drouin should certainly bolster the Canadiens’ offense.
The 22-year-old is a skilled playmaker with considerable upside, enjoying a breakthrough 53-point performance in 2016-17. He’s a restricted free agent coming off an entry-level contract and could receive a five-year deal worth between $5 million to $6 million annually.
Much of the Drouin trade speculation had him being peddled for a top-four defenseman. Sergachev, who turns 19 on June 25, certainly has the potential but hasn’t reached that level yet in the NHL. He’s exempt from the expansion draft, allowing the Bolts to protect another player. However, they could remain in the market for an experienced rearguard this summer.
Bergevin probably isn’t done dealing. The Canadiens still need scoring depth at center. After moving Sergachev, they’ll also need skilled blueline depth down the road.
Most of the speculation leading up to this deal had Drouin being swapped for Alex Galchenyuk. While Galchenyuk remains a Hab there are reports claiming he’s being actively shopped. He’s been linked to Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene in the trade-rumor mill.
The Drouin trade also casts some doubt over Alexander Radulov’s future in Montreal. He’s an unrestricted free agent in July. While both sides were reportedly keen on getting a deal done, re-signing the young Drouin takes priority. If Radulov departs, the Habs will also need scoring depth on right wing.
Six years, $33 million for Drouin in Montreal
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) June 15, 2017