The Montreal Canadiens had a season to forget in 2021-22, falling to last in the NHL standings. Part of the disappointment in Montreal this past season was not just due to the performance of the team as a whole, but also of the individual players. Winger Josh Anderson is one of those Canadiens whose 2021-22 production was a reason for disappointment. While he showed flashes of goal-scoring touch and ended up fifth on the team in points, Anderson’s 19-goal, 32-point marks are definitely on the low end of what former GM Marc Bergevin had in mind when he signed Anderson to a $5.5MM AAV contract. With all that being said, though, this season’s disappointing production apparently hasn’t stopped Anderson from being a hot name on the trade market.
Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff reported as part of his Trade Targets Board that GM Kent Hughes’ “phone rang consistently with teams inquiring about Anderson.” Seravalli adds that the Canadiens have “resisted” the urge to trade Anderson, but that interest did exist on the part of the inquiring teams. Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic shed some light on the situation as well, reporting that Montreal “turned down some serious offers” for Anderson and that GM’s around the league “keep asking about him,” but that the Canadiens “aren’t planning on trading” their power forward. Evidently, Anderson’s rare combination of size and speed is tantalizing enough for other teams to make “serious offers” for Anderson, despite his somewhat underwhelming production. While these reports do indicate that Montreal is hesitant to trade Anderson, it’s clear that his situation will be one to monitor once the offseason trade market begins in full.
Now, for some other news regarding teams in the Atlantic Division:
- Much of the attention surrounding the Canadiens’ draft strategy revolves around who they might pick with the number-one selection. What is discussed less is the possibilities the team can pursue thanks to the second first-rounder Montreal owns as part of the Tyler Toffoli trade from earlier this year. One player Montreal could be targeting with that selection or even one of their second-round picks is Slovakian winger Adam Sykora. Per Robert Durkac of Slovakian outlet tvnoviny.sk, both the Canadiens and Arizona Coyotes have interest in Sykora and sought out additional information from the player while he was in Buffalo attending the NHL Combine. Sykora is one of the youngest players in this year’s draft and has impressed scouts with his defensively-oriented, relentless style, a style that has allowed him to be a regular at the highest level of Slovakian professional hockey, despite his youth. Sykora is ranked 42nd among European Skaters by NHL Central Scouting, although his performance for Slovakia at the IIHF World Championships has seen his stock rise in the eyes of some outlets.
- The Ottawa Senators lost a high-ranked executive in their hockey operations department earlier this year, as Pierre McGuire was fired from his role with the team after less than a year on the job. Now, according to Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, the Senators would like to add to their hockey operations department. Friedman reports that there “could be some hires” coming to Ottawa “soon,” and that the hires would be made with the intention of the Senators bolstering their hockey operations. The Senators have had a difficult few years since their miraculous run to the Eastern Conference Final in 2017, so their reported intention to add more help to their hockey operations department could be seen as a positive sign that the team is looking to get a bit more assistance on the road back to contention.