May 27, 2024

Carey Price: Coyotes Relocation Unlikely to Facilitate Kent Hughes’ Trade Efforts Carey Price has made it clear that he prefers to remain with the Montreal Canadiens, the only NHL team he has ever played for. However, he understands that his contract poses challenges for the Canadiens’ payroll management, especially in the offseason, particularly with players like Brendan Gallagher, who may eventually retire on long-term injured reserve (LTIR). While Price wouldn’t reject a trade if it benefited the Canadiens, his current situation remains unchanged as he resides in Western Canada with his family. Nevertheless, a trade isn’t guaranteed, especially considering the differences between his contract and Shea Weber’s.

Unlike Weber, whose contract was structured differently, Price’s contract poses a challenge for potential trades. He is set to receive $5.5 million annually until July 1, 2025, after which he will continue to earn $2 million per season until the end of his contract in 2026. Consequently, his impact on the payroll remains significant until 2026, making it difficult for teams to trade for him, especially before July 1, 2025, when his salary decreases.

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Trading Price this summer would likely require extraordinary maneuvering by general manager Kent Hughes, something that seems improbable. Renaud Lavoie, in his recent column on BPM Sports, pondered whether Hughes could successfully trade Price’s contract to another team this offseason, but the answer remains uncertain.

Lavoie also noted that the relocation of the Coyotes to Salt Lake City may not benefit the Canadiens in terms of trading Price’s contract. The Coyotes’ new owner, Ryan Smith, intends to increase the team’s payroll, signaling an end to their previous role as a destination for undesirable contracts to meet the salary floor.

In any case, Price and Weber will continue to reside in Western Canada, regardless of their contractual situations, potentially finishing their careers on the injured list rather than actively playing.

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