The Montreal Canadiens have several forwards scheduled for unrestricted free agency later this month, and it’s not clear how many they will be able to retain. Phillip Danault, perhaps the one with the most leverage in any negotiation, seems destined to hit the open market. Though rumors had emerged linking Danault to the Seattle Kraken, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports and Eric Engels of Sportsnet have both confirmed that the two sides didn’t even speak about a potential deal.
Still, with Danault, Joel Armia, Corey Perry, Eric Staal and Tomas Tatar all pending free agents, the Canadiens have some work ahead of them to fill up the forward ranks. David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period tweets that the team has been “actively exploring the forward market” and notes that Montreal has even inquired about Anthony Beauvillier of the New York Islanders. Beauvillier is an arbitration-eligible restricted free agent, but is also a huge part of the Islanders forward group and part of the team’s protected list for the expansion draft.