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Canadiens Rumored to Be Among Teams Interested in Rasmus Ristolainen

The Montreal Canadiens are one of several teams rumored to be looking at defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen. Could he replace Shea Weber?

The Buffalo Sabres are continuing to entertain trade offers on defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen. Hockey insider Pierre LeBrun reports there are several teams interested as the 26-year-old has one year remaining on his current contract, he offers what some NHL teams feel they are missing and could be a viable replacement for players who went down unexpectedly over the past couple of weeks.

LeBrun provided an update on the Ristolainen talk, both during the TSN Insider Trading report and as part of an article for The Athletic. He notes there is pretty solid interest from several teams and the general asking price is believed to be a first-round pick and a prospect.

Related: Kraken and Canadiens Playing High Stakes Poker Game Over Carey Price

Rasmus Ristolainen Sabres Shea Weber Montreal Canadiens
Rasmus Ristolainen Shea Weber Montreal Canadiens

“Among the clubs who have inquired are Montreal and Winnipeg, for obvious reasons,” writes LeBrun. He says the Jets are looking everywhere to try and improve their blue line situation. Meanwhile, LeBrun writes about the Canadiens:

The Habs, of course, need to replace Shea Weber and in Ristolainen — while obviously an inferior player — there’s a similar big body at least. But I also think the Habs have a few other defencemen on their shortlist slotted ahead of Ristolainen.

How Bad do the Canadiens Want, Or Need Ristolainen?

LeBrun says there are defenseman higher on the priority list than Ristolainen that they’d prefer, but they’re finding out what the Sabres will want in return and doing their due diligence to see if bringing someone in with the size and pedigree of a Ristolainen would make for a suitable replacement while Weber is out for the season.

Ristolainen would provide the Canadiens a short-term stop gap until they learn more about Weber’s future. It’s very much up in the air how long Weber will be out of if he’ll return at all. The one year left on Ristolainen’s deal means the Canadiens aren’t committing to a player and can do a test run of sorts before potentially having to make a much longer-term decision.

Still, it’s $5.6 million to grab this player for a year. Is that the way to go for the Canadiens? It might be considering the amount of cap space that seems to have opened up with Weber on LTIR. If Carey Price gets selected in the expansion draft, the Habs will have plenty of room.

Next: Predicting the Seattle Kraken’s 2021 NHL Expansion Draft Selections

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Dan

    July 21, 2021 at 1:32 am

    Risto is at $5.4MM, (saved ‘em $200k already).

  2. Pingback: Don't Be Surprised When the Kraken Bring Carey Price Home Tonight

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