The Montreal Canadiens could complete a hockey trade with the Anaheim Ducks in the 2024 offseason.

The Montreal Canadiens could complete a hockey trade with the Anaheim Ducks in the 2024 offseason.


The Montreal Canadiens could complete a hockey trade with the Anaheim Ducks in the 2024 offseason.

Even with the NHL playoffs heating up and entering the final stretch, the truth is that there are only four teams still in contention for the Stanley Cup. Rumors, however, involve all franchises, including the rebuilding Montreal Canadiens.

In a trade scenario discussed by The Athletic’s Eric Duhatschek on May 24, the Canadiens would acquire Anaheim Ducks top-6 forward Trevor Zegras by sending their 2024 first-round pick (No. 5) the other way around.

While Zegras has not demanded a trade from the Ducks, The Athletic’s Eric Stephens reported on February 29, ahead of the March 8 trade deadline, “There has been intense speculation that (Ducks general manager) Pat Verbeek might deal away Zegras.”

The Ducks ultimately held onto Zegras and didn’t trade the forward away in March 2024.

Canadiens Offering Best Trade For Ducks’ Trevor Zegras

The Athletic’s readers submitted a few alternative trade options involving Zegras for the Ducks to consider. On top of the Canadiens one, readers wondered about two packages submitted by the Philadelphia Flyers, Zegras’ former team (they drafted Zegras but he didn’t get to play for the franchise).

Duhatschek, however, doesn’t think the Flyers are in a position to land Zegras and his cap hit of $5.75 million, stating “Philadelphia has a lot of salary-cap issues to navigate going forward.”

In the end, the insider also thinks “Anaheim says no to both. Not enough for a player with Zegras’s upside,” adding “In real life, simple often also works the best,” before breaking down the win-win trade offer involving Montreal.

The Ducks already hold the No. 3 pick of the 2024 draft. By agreeing to the package offered by the Habs in this scenario, they would get another top-5 selection and potentially land two future homegrown franchise cornerstones developed within the organization.

The Canadiens’ decision to trade for Zegras would align with their strategy to get a ready-made NHL forward with the potential for improvement. Duhatschek expects them to pick a player of that ilk in the draft with the No. 5 pick if the Habs keep it.

“Montreal is probably targeting a forward at No. 5,” Duhatschek wrote. “Why not turn the pick into a ready-made NHL player who is only 23 and produced 65 points in 81 games two years ago, before injuries derailed his 2023-24 season?”

Zegras scored 65 points in 81 games two years ago and is coming off a 15-point regular-season in which he could only appear in 31 games because of injuries. He scored 6 goals and assisted 9, finishing the year with a minus-1 value.

Trevor Zegras is “Available and Controllable”

Adding credence to this fantasy scenario, Dave Pagnotta of the Fourth Period discussed Zegras’s availability on Sirius XM NHL Network Radio appearing on Steve Kouleas’ Power Play Show on May 22, via NHL Rumors.

“He’s available and he’s controllable,” Pagnotta told Kouleas, referring to Zegras’ being on the trade block and under contract through the end of the 2025-26 season, per CapFriendly.

Pagnotta, however, doesn’t think there will be an imminent trade involving Zegras after the Ducks decided to keep him in tow through the 2024 trade deadline.

“There is no sense of urgency,” Pagnotta said. “(The Ducks) don’t have to make a move. (…) Those conversations will pick up probably starting in the next few weeks and then kind of leading into the draft.”

Pagnotta mentioned the Canadiens (along with the Flyers) as a potential landing spot for Zegras.

“He (Zegras) may want something with a little more pizzazz market-wise, and that’s one of the kinds of rumors floating around as to why he’s available and out there but there is interest in him,” Pagnotta said. “I think the Canadiens. I think Philadelphia. (…) But I would certainly be surprised if it seemed like Montreal is not part of that mix.”

For Montreal, Zegras’s integration with players like Nick Suzuki (the Habs’ top-line center, per Daily Faceoff) and Cole Caufield (top-line left winger) would give the team a dynamic offensive combination, add depth, and allow head coach Martin St. Louis to have more room for moving players up and down the top-six.

Antonio Losada covers the NHL for A veteran sports writer based in Spain, Antonio has covered the NBA, NFL and soccer for over 10 years, with bylines at SB Nation, FanSided, Yahoo Sports, FanGraphs, RotoBaller and more. He has also been nominated for multiple FSWA awards, including Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and DFS Writer of the Year. More about Antonio Losada

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