Tuesday was Max Pacioretty’s annual charity golf tournament and with that came some updates on his status with the Habs moving forward.
Regarding the confusion surrounding the invitations that came up a couple of weeks ago, Pacioretty indicated that the trade rumours involving him delayed the process. Had he been dealt, the tournament wouldn’t have gone ahead which is why the invites hadn’t been sent out until recently. While that probably won’t get rid of the speculation that management wasn’t going to attend, it’s at least a plausible explanation.
With GM Marc Bergevin in attendance, he naturally was asked about the trade speculation surrounding Montreal’s captain. Bergevin merely indicated that he expects Pacioretty to be at training camp like everyone else which is about as close to avoiding the question as he could get. (Realistically, there isn’t anything else he could really say.)
Pacioretty’s new agent Allan Walsh was also there and told media that while there have been plenty of discussions between his camp and Bergevin, none of that has been about a contract extension and that the Canadiens have yet to make an offer. He reiterated that Pacioretty would like to remain with the Habs but if there haven’t been any contract talks yet, that doesn’t seem likely to happen.
It may be taking longer to get done than expected but it still appears that Pacioretty’s days with Montreal appear to be coming to an end. It just may take into the upcoming season for the move to actually be done.
Meanwhile, there is some other news around the team. Richard Labbe of La Presse is reporting that a new contract for Michael McCarron is close to completion with his agent acknowledging that they’re close to finalizing his file. He is the lone remaining restricted free agent that the Habs have to sign and it’s believed that he’ll receive a short-term contract. Even with a deal done, McCarron will be in tough to land a regular roster spot, especially with the additions of Joel Armia, Tomas Plekanec, and Matt Peca earlier this offseason.
Rookie camp is set to start in the near future and there hasn’t been a lot of information about the invitation list just yet. One newcomer that will be there is Finnish blueliner Aleksi Anttalainen who spent last season playing for Joel Bouchard with Blainville-Boisbriand of the QMJHL. He went undrafted back in June. One player who was at the development camp in late June that isn’t likely to be back for this camp and the rookie tournament is centre Ryan Hughes as the Canadiens quietly released him from his ATO in mid-July. The tournament starts September 7th so the invite list should be out within the next week or so.
Former Habs assistant coach J.J. Daigneault was named as an assistant with San Antonio of the AHL on Monday. They’re now the affiliate of the St. Louis Blues. He joins Sylvain Lefebvre in resurfacing in the minor leagues as the former bench boss for Montreal’s AHL teams in recent years was officially named an assistant with San Diego, Anaheim’s AHL affiliate on Monday.