Monahan Re-Signs: His Impact

By JD Lagrange – The Montreal Canadiens have announced having re-signed veteran center and pending UFA Sean Monahan for one year, worth $1.985 million. Monahan also has a $15,000 bonus based on the number of games that he plays, potentially bringing his salary up to the $2 million mark.

I don’t know what this mean for the possibility of the Canadiens acquiring Pierre-Luc Dubois but personally, I saw Monahan as a “plan B” in the event a Dubois trade was not possible. I am still holding hopes that a trade with the Jets can be done, perhaps with Christian Dvorak being sent the other both for salary reason, and because he is a center. But we shall know more in the coming days, as we are only eight days away from the NHL Draft as I write this.

Monahan’s impact

There is no denying that Sean Monahan had a very positive impact both on the Canadiens as a team, but also on some of the individual players as well, in particular on young captain Nick Suzuki. Mony has always been very much respected in Calgary and many former teammates were upset to see him go, and he embraced the City of Montreal and the logo from day one.

Here is the Canadiens’ record with and without Monahan in the line-up.

Team record
With MonahanWithout Monahan
.520 (21st)PTS%.368 (29th)
2.92 (22nd)GF/GP2.70 (29th)
3.60 (27th)GA/GP3.77 (29th)
17.1% (29th)PP%15.6% (28th)
79.1% (12th)PK%69.8% (32nd)
51.6% (12th)FO%47.1% (27th)

Granted, with all of the injuries to other players than Monahan himself, it’s unlikely that the team would have kept on its pace of early into the season, up until December 5th, his last game. But it shows the impact that he had on the games in all situations, whether it’d be at even strength, on the power play or in short handed situations.


Few have suffered more from Monahan’s injury than Suzuki. Monahan ate some key minutes and provided quality experience, allowing Zukes to focus more on offense. After the injury, the captain played well over 20 minutes a game, in all situations, and wasn’t quite as effective overall.

With MonahanSUZUKIWithout Monahan
Other players

Monahan’s impact went well beyond Suzuki. With such a young team, he was a quality veteran with great leadership attributes, added to the other leaders the team already had. And his on ice production in all situations was a contributing factor to the Canadiens’ surprising start to the season, after finishing dead last the previous season.

This were the Habs Top-10 scorers with Monahan in the line-up, prior to him going on the injured reserve:

1- Nick Suzuki25141428-11.12
2- Cole Caufield2514923-40.92
3- Kirby Dach2541418-20.72
4- Sean Monahan2561117-50.68
5- Christian Dvorak255510-10.40
6- Kaiden Guhle251910-80.40
7- Josh Anderson23628-20.35
8- Mike Hoffman16538+30.50
9- Arber Xhekaj2344800.35
10- Brendan Gallagher22358-30.36

Now let’s look at the Habs Top-10 scorers without Monahan in the line-up:

1- Nick Suzuki57122638-120.67
2- Mike Matheson4072229+110.73
3- Mike Hoffman5191726-130.51
4- Jonathan Drouin4622325-140.54
5- Josh Anderson4615924-60.52
6- Rafaël Harvey-Pinard3414620+70.59
7- Kirby Dach3310102000.61
8- Christian Dvorak3951318-110.46
9- Jesse Ylönen3761016-110.43
10- Jake Evans2921416+30.55
16- Cole Caufield2112113-60.62

Looking at all of this, it is safe to affirm that having Monahan back with the Canadiens is a good thing. But it’s only one small step for Kent Hughes and the management staff, as there are bigger issues to deal with.

Will the Hughes be able to pull another rabbit out of his hat, as he did a year ago when acquiring Kirby Dach? Will Dubois end up in Montreal? Maybe so, or maybe not. Will the GM want to improve his goaltending situation? Let’s hope so as unlike many fans, I’m not sold on Sam Montembeault as a starter in the NHL. Does Hughes still feel like adding a veteran top-paire right-handed defenseman is a priority? Too many questions, too few answers. In the meantime, the rumour mill will be going strong. We will know more by June 28th, the first day of the NHL Draft.