With this extension, Pezzetta will avoid having to become a restricted free agent at the start of the new league year next month, and now has a contract that will walk him to unrestricted free agency in the summer of 2025.
While not the heftiest contract extension in terms of finances (it’s just a shade above the $775k new league minimum) this deal is a solid reward for a player who has quickly endeared himself to Canadiens fans over the course of the last two seasons. The 25-year-old is a 2016 sixth-round pick who spent three seasons developing with the Canadiens’ AHL affiliate, the Laval Rocket, before making his NHL debut in 2021-22.
Despite compiling just 19 points in 107 games at the AHL level, Pezzetta managed to play 51 games with the Canadiens in the 2021-22 season, and this past year had his first campaign spent entirely at the NHL level.
While the former Sudbury Wolves captain has scored at a similarly low rate in the NHL (26 points in 114 games) and has averaged under nine minutes of nightly ice time across that span of games, he’s nonetheless managed to skate in head coach Martin St. Louis’ nightly lineup more often than not.
He’s earned his current role on the Canadiens on the back of his work ethic and energetic physical play. At this sort of price tag, it’s easy to see why Montreal would want to keep Pezzetta around to maintain the depth on their NHL roster.