Montreal Canadiens General Manager Kent Hughes and Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev
Photo credit: Markerzone

Major Catastrophe Confirmed in Tampa Bay: Kent Hughes Has a Major Opportunity

Published February 8, 2024 at 6:28 PM

An absolutely catastrophic announcement for the Tampa Bay Lightning has just been officially confirmed regarding defenseman Mikhail Sergachev.

The former first-round pick of the Canadiens has suffered a double leg fracture and is expected to be sidelined for a very long time.

Although no return timeline has been established, the 25-year-old Russian is not expected to return to play this season, including the playoffs.

Major Opportunity Presents Itself for Kent Hughes

This loss of Sergachev would be immense for Jon Cooper's team, which is already dealing with a defensive brigade that is significantly less impressive than in past years, due to salary cap constraints.

Behind Victor Hedman and Erik Cernak, the depth is seriously lacking, with Nick Perbix, Calvin De Haan, Haydn Fleury, Darren Raddish, and Emil Lilleberg.

Considering a trade to add a defenseman was anticipated for a team that aims for the highest honors year after year, recent developments could fuel a sense of urgency for Julien BriseBois.

Known for not hesitating to pay a high price for wise acquisitions, the Lightning's management might turn to the Montreal Canadiens and their surplus in defense to fill a significant need.

It is clear that Tampa's GM will reach out to his counterpart to inquire about the availability of certain defensemen from the Canadiens.

Normally, BriseBois loves acquiring a player with more than one season left on a very favorable contract, and Kent Hughes has exactly three on hand that could satisfy his counterpart: David Savard, Jordan Harris, and Johnathan Kovacevic.

While the case for Savard is much less plausible due to the high price Hughes would demand, the cases of Harris and Kovacevic are certainly worth watching.

The Florida organization doesn't have much in terms of draft pick capital or quality prospects, but it still has some assets that could meet the requirements of the Tricolore.

The Lightning will be a team to watch until the deadline on March 8th.
February 8   |   373 answers
Major Catastrophe Confirmed in Tampa Bay: Kent Hughes Has a Major Opportunity

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