Montreal Canadiens general manager Kent Hughes
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David Reinbacher Traded for an Elite Forward? Kent Hughes Reportedly Had an Incredible Opportunity at the Draft

Published January 9, 2024 at 9:39 PM

The selection of David Reinbacher at the 5th overall spot in the last draft created a shockwave among the majority of Montreal Canadiens fans.

Many of them were hoping for the addition of the phenomenon Matvei Michkov, or at least, an elite potential prospect to fill glaring gaps in the attack.

The names Ryan Leonard and Zach Benson also resonated a lot in Montreal, but the organization ultimately turned to another defenseman, much to the regret of many.

However, Kent Hughes did not only prefer to select Reinbacher over popular choices like Michkov, Leonard, or Benson, he also turned down several significant trade offers for his 5th pick.

Among them, one of the most known is undoubtedly the one with the Nashville Predators. According to reports, Barry Trotz would have offered Hughes the promising goalie Yaroslav Askarov, in addition to their two first-round selections, the 15th and the 24th overall picks, which became Matthew Wood and Tanner Molendyk, to obtain the Canadiens' coveted pick.

With the surprising announcement of Cutter Gauthier's trade to Anaheim, in return for defenseman Jamie Drysdale and a second-round pick, a new rumor has just been confirmed about another trade offer refused by the Tricolore's GM.

Daniel Brière of the Flyers would have offered Gauthier, who was the 5th overall pick in the 2022 draft, to Hughes, in exchange for his 5th pick in 2023. This offer was also declined by the general manager of the Canadiens, preferring to snag Reinbacher.

We could finally add another persistent but unconfirmed rumor, which mentioned that Steve Yzerman, the GM of the Red Wings, would have offered his 9th and 17th overall picks for the Canadiens' 5th pick. These selections became Nate Danielson and Axel Sandin-Pellikka.

Therefore, we can deduce that Kent Hughes took a big risk by betting all his chips on David Reinbacher. He had the opportunity to capitalize on his choice with several interesting elements, or to choose a promising forward who would have filled an important organizational need.

It will take several years before evaluating the impact of this decision by the Canadiens, but at the moment, it is strongly hoped that the Austrian defenseman truly becomes a top player, otherwise this selection could become a failure for the rebuild.

January 9   |   280 answers
David Reinbacher Traded for an Elite Forward? Kent Hughes Reportedly Had an Incredible Opportunity at the Draft

Would you have traded Reinbacher for Gauthier?

Yes9634.3 %
No18465.7 %
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