I’m a big fan of offseason speculation. We’re at the incredibly slow point in the year when there’s essentially nothing of relevance going on in the hockey world. For that reason, I enjoy toying with even the most outlandish of ideas. For that reason, we’re going to do just that.
For those of you who are unaware, Max Pacioretty has been informed by the Montreal Canadiens that they will not be talking a extensions with him. This all but guarantees that the Habs will opt to trade him sooner, rather than later, in their attempt to rebuild the roster from the ground up.
Pacioretty has been one of the few highlights outside of Carey Price in the last decade for the Habs, and at 29 years old, he’s arguably still in the prime of his career. The 6’2″, 213 pound left winger is coming off a bit of a down year, only playing 64 games, with a mere 37 points on the season, but take into consideration the level of talent he’s been playing with. Since the 2011-2012 season, he’s played 73+ games in all but two seasons, and in each of those he’s posted 30+ goals and 60+ points per season. Let’s not forget his leadership qualities, wearing the C for the Canadiens for the last three years.
So what would it take to get a guy like Max Pacioretty wearing a Blue Note in the 2018-2019 season? Let’s take a look.
We all know that after the monster offseason the Blues have had, we’re a bit thin in only one place….cap space. Pacioretty is due to make $4.5 million in his final season, and the Blues have only $3.2 million in projected space left…..and that’s before we give Edmundson the pay day he deserves.
To alleviate this, Doug Armstrong would work his managerial magic yet again and would move Alex Steen in the deal, freeing up an extra $5.75 million this season. But we all know that the Canadiens would want some serious long term capital for a guy who’s considered as their most prolific player to date. My thoughts? The Blues ship Alexander Steen, their 2020 1st round pick, and Jordan Kyrou to the Canadiens in exchange for Max Pacioretty.
So let’s just take a look at what kind of lineup changes this could create.
Pacioretty – ROR – Tarasenko
Schwartz – Schenn – Perron
Maroon – Bozak – Fabbri
Jaskin – Thomas – Barbashev
This here is what I like to call “Win Now” mentality. Sure, you’re not going to have Pacioretty after the upcoming season ends, but it sure as hell looks like a lineup loaded with talent, and the ability to make a deep playoff run this season.
Again, I’m not exactly cheering for this to actually come to fruition, and in all honesty, it’s a real long shot. But the way these last few weeks have gone for the Blues, it’s hard to think anything is totally out of the question. Personally I believe the Blues are done with offseason moves, as doing anything else would put the Blues plethora of prospects in jeopardy.
Coming back to reality, I think the Habs will end up finding a viable trade partner in someone like the Dallas Stars, but it’s nice to think for a seconds about how incredible the Blues could be if he somehow ended up here. However, if the stars don’t align, and Patches skates out onto the Montreal ice in October, don’t be surprised to see his name popping up as a potential playoff push option for the Blues at the trade deadline.
Hang in there Blues fans, only 80 days, 21 hours, 32 minutes and…..37 seconds till Blues hockey is back.
Thanks for reading,
Let’s Go Blues