Interestingly, after trading for Jonathan Drouin the Montreal Canadiens have extended AHL forward Charles Hudon for two seasons, inking him to a two-year contract. The deal is two-way for the first season, and switches to a one-way contract in 2018-19. The deal will pay him the minimum of $650K per season while in the NHL. Hudon could technically be a Group VI free agent after the contract expires should he continue to be relegated to AHL duty as he has so far in his young career.
About to turn 23, Hudon has played just six NHL games in his career so far, registering four points. The elite AHL scorer has yet to make an impact, but was still expected to be protected in the expansion draft until Drouin was acquired. In our Montreal Expansion Primer, our own Brian La Rose wrote this:
There are questions about his skating but his scoring touch in the minors will make him an intriguing option for Vegas GM George McPhee if Montreal decides to leave him unprotected. Given their own scoring woes, Hudon is someone that the Canadiens may decide is too important to leave exposed despite his lack of NHL experience.
It would seem that the Canadiens don’t have room to protect him any longer, unless a subsequent deal is made to move another forward (see: Alex Galchenyuk) out of town. The fact that Hudon got a one-way deal (at least in the second season) is also interesting, meaning he’ll be making an NHL salary even if he still hasn’t made the team. This might point to the idea that Montreal has bigger plans for him down the road, as they continue to try and increase the scoring level among their forward group.
Pierre LeBrun of TSN provided the financial details.