Eric Bolte - USA TODAY Sports

What We Learned: Time for the Montréal Canadiens to let Jesperi Kotkaniemi go

The big takeaway from the Carolina Hurricanes giving Jesperi Kotkaniemi a huge one-year AAV on an offer sheet is that Montréal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin's job is really simple.

You take the first- and third-round picks as compensation and move on with your life.

I don't think there's a single person in hockey who believes Kotkaniemi is worth $6.1 million against the cap in a realistic sense; if he hits the market as an unrestricted free agent tomorrow, there's not a single team that would give him that money free and clear. The reason Carolina offered it, then, is that it believes this would be short-term pain (one year of gross overpayment) to lock in the player on his next contract at a more affordable number. The $6.1 million is, effectively, the price being paid so that Mont

Access this article with EP Premium

Go Premium to access this article

Register your Premium-membership at to get access to this article and more quality, in-depth coverage at EP Rinkside

This article is about:
NHL Carolina Hurricanes Montréal Canadiens NHL Jesperi Kotkaniemi
Scoring Leaders