Sean Monahan drawing a lot of interest ahead of the deadline
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Leafs officially linked to a former 1st round draft pick from another Canadian club

Published January 22, 2024 at 6:34 PM
BY DEAN CHAUDHRY

An intriguing name to follow as we near closer to the trade deadline is veteran centre Sean Monahan from the Montreal Canadiens. The former Calgary Flames first round pick from the 2013 NHL Entry Draft saw his play depreciate in quick order between 2019-20 and 2021-22 as he battled through a series of injuries, but his career has since seen a bit of a revival in Montreal.

Daily Faceoff's Frank Seravalli believes that Monahan will be a top trade target for several contending teams needing help down the middle, but the asking price might be as a high as a first round pick, per Seravalli.

Between 2014-15 and 2018-19, Monahan scored 150 goals and 329 points in 396 games across 5 seasons in Calgary. In the following 3 seasons he scored 40 goals and 99 points in 185 games, including just 18 goals and 51 points in his final 2 seasons.

Monahan was traded in the summer of 2022 to the Canadiens alongside a conditional first round pick in 2025 for future considerations. The Flames desperately needed the cap space to sign Nazem Kadri. In 71 games with Montreal, Monahan has re-found some of his scoring touch as he has 17 goals and 48 points, including 31 points this season.


Seravalli mentions the Maple Leafs as an option, hinting at his past with the Flames and Brad Treliving:

"Toronto Maple Leafs: GM Brad Treliving would know Monahan well. He isn't the same player now, but he'd fit nicely behind Auston Matthews and John Tavares."

While the first round price tag seems steep, some of the comparable trades from recent trade deadlines make it seem more and more likely, which could push several teams out of the mix.

Andrew Copp was traded to the New York Rangers for a conditional first round pick, a second round, a fifth round pick, and a prospect. Barclay Goodrow was acquired by Tampa Bay for a first round pick and a prospect. Paul Stastny with salary retention was traded to Winnipeg for a first round pick, a fourth round pick, and a prospect.

The Maple Leafs could certainly use his veteran leadership, another center behind Auston Matthews and John Tavares, and a two-way player with special teams capabilities. The Leafs do have a 2024 and 2026 first round pick but they don't have any 2nd rounders in the next 3 seasons nor do they have a 2025 first rounder.

Monahan's low cap hit of $1.985 million makes him that much more palatable but it remains to be seen if Montreal would trade him to a divisional rival and if the Leafs are even willing to part ways with a very limited and barren cupboard when it comes to draft picks.

Nevertheless, Monahan, if the Leafs were to acquire him, would certainly be an upgrade for their bottom-6 and his low cap hit is tantalizing.

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Leafs officially linked to a former 1st round draft pick from another Canadian club

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