The Winnipeg Jets have made a significant move to bolster their roster by acquiring Sean Monahan from the Montreal Canadiens. In exchange for the veteran centre, the Jets have sent a 2024 first-round draft pick and a conditional 2027 third-round pick to the Canadiens. This trade comes as the Jets aim to strengthen their depth down the middle and address some pressing issues.
Sean Monahan, who stands at six feet and two inches and weighs 202 pounds, brings a strong presence to the faceoff circle and the defensive back end. Throughout this season, Monahan has already recorded 13 goals and 35 points in 49 games with the Habs. His ability to win faceoffs, with a 55% success rate over the past two years, will be a valuable asset to the Jets.
General Manager Kevin Cheveldayoff expressed his excitement for the addition of Monahan, highlighting his professionalism and strengths in the faceoff department. Cheveldayoff believes that Monahan’s presence will have a positive impact on the rest of the team, as one player can often turn the tide in faceoff situations.
Sean Monahan, originally drafted as the sixth overall pick by the Calgary Flames in 2013, spent the first nine years of his NHL career with the Flames before being traded to Montreal in 2022. Despite a shortened first season with the Habs due to a groin injury, Canadiens General Manager Kent Hughes emphasized that Monahan’s injury history was not a concern in completing this trade. Hughes signed Monahan based on his understanding of the market, the potential upside, and his confidence in the player’s abilities.
The Jets, currently sitting third in the Central Division standings, only two points behind the division-leading Colorado Avalanche, are determined to compete for the top spot. Prior to this acquisition, the team suffered three consecutive losses before the all-star break. The addition of Monahan brings depth and talented offensive capabilities to their lineup, addressing their needs down the middle.
With the acquisition of Monahan, the Jets’ lineup now features Mark Scheifele, Sean Monahan, Adam Lowry, and Vladislav Namestnikov at the center position. Monahan is expected to slot into the second-line center role, playing alongside Nikolaj Ehlers and Cole Perfetti. Head coach Rick Bowness sees Monahan as a valuable addition, particularly for faceoffs and power-play situations.
As the Jets seek to make the most of their deadline cap space, which amounts to $3.279 million after the trade, they now have the flexibility to further upgrade their roster before the March 8 trade deadline. The Western Conference has seen an arms race among contending teams, with the Vancouver Canucks acquiring Elias Lindholm and other teams adding players like Corey Perry and Zach Parise.
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