Habs Flex Their Cap; Acquire Mason and Parts From Jets

The Canadiens have dealt Simon Bourque, a minor league defenseman, to the Jets for Joel Armia, Steve Mason, a 7th round pick in 2019 and a 4th round pick in 2020.

This already is a win and Marc Bergevin should be applauded for this move. The Canadiens had cap space as leverage in negotiations which allowed them to take on a bad contract in order to bring in assets.

As reported by Chris Johnston, the Habs are already shopping Mason and they easily could retain salary in a deal. Mason has a cap hit of $4.1 million and will be UFA next off-season. He would look a lot better to another team needing a goaltender with a reduced hit for one year. The other option would be to buy him out, but in order for that to happen, they must place him on waivers today, June 30th, at noon.

Here are the details of a buyout for Mason from CapFriendly:

If the Canadiens were to buy Mason out, they would have $1.4 million against their cap for two years.


Now let’s look at the pieces moved:

Simon Bourque, 21, was drafted by the Canadiens in the 6th round of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Following his junior career with the Rimouski Oceanic and Saint John Sea Dogs, Bourque turned pro last season and played for the Laval Rocket in the AHL. He often was the odd man out to get into the lineup so there is no surprise that he was moved. He played 46 games for the Rocket; posting 3 assists, 28 PIM and had a +2 rating.

Joel Armia, 25, was a first round draft pick by the Buffalo Sabres in 2011; taken 16th overall. He was traded to the Jets in 2015 in the deal that sent Evander Kane packing. Armia is coming off his entry-level contract and is a restricted free agent. This past season he had 12 goals and 17 assists in 79 games playing in Winnipeg’s bottom six.

Steve Mason, 30, was taken by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the 3rd round of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. He won the Calder Memorial Trophy in his rookie season in 2008-09. From Columbus, he was dealt to the Flyers in 2013 and then picked up in free agency by Winnipeg in 2017. Last season, Mason was the back-up for the Jets, however, missed time due to injury. In 13 games, he had a .906 save percentage and a 3.24 GAA.

Additionally, the Canadiens have added future draft picks to continue to build their prospect pool. They now have 9 picks for the 2019 draft and 8 for 2020.



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One Response to Habs Flex Their Cap; Acquire Mason and Parts From Jets

  1. I guess if you want to accumulate picks this is the way to go..but Mason is totally useless to Montreal and will be either bought out or traded to another team for more picks. Armia is a 1st round pick that has not worked out. I would like to say maybe he can have a fresh start but Montreal’s development has been atrocious ..but with new coach in Laval hopefully things will change. Now Winnipeg has cap room to sign Stasny even though I thought Montreal was going to take a run at him…time will tell

    Bay_Bye June 30, 2018 at 2:50 pm Reply

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