The Montreal Canadiens have snatched up another depth defenseman, signing Louis Belpedio to a one-year two-way contract according to Bob McKenzie of TSN. The deal will carry an NHL salary of $750K, an AHL salary of $225K and a minor league guarantee of $300K. Belpedio was a Group VI unrestricted free agent. Not to be forgotten is the bottom of the forward group, which has also added Cedric Paquette on a one-year contract. Paquette will earn $950K according to Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic. Jean-Sebastien Dea has also been signed to a two-way deal according to Renaud Lavoir of TVA Sports.
Of the three, Paquette is the name likely to be seen in the Montreal lineup most often. The physical forward is a good fourth line checker and can hold his own at the face-off dot as well. A veteran of 424 NHL games, Pacquette has logged over 1,000 hits and a +38 turnover differential as a disruptive defensive presence.
Dea, 27, is a journeyman forward who is capable of contributing as an NHL substitute, but has spent the majority of each of his pro seasons in the AHL. Dea is a well-rounded offensive player, but lack high-end skill and upside, making him an experienced minor league option, but not a player that should be pegged for a regular NHL role.
Belpedio, 25, was once a highly-regarded prospect defenseman for the Minnesota Wild, but has not panned out. The 2014 third-round pick and Miami University standout has only played in four NHL games over four pro seasons. His AHL production has left a lot to be desired as well. Montreal hopes that a move to a new organization could help to jumpstart his career.