The Montreal Canadiens solved their goaltending dilemma Sunday dealing Peter Budaj to the Winnipeg Jets in exchange for Eric Tangradi.
Winnipeg also picked up Patrick Holland in the deal.
Budaj, 32, has spent nine seasons in the NHL with the Avalanche and Canadiens. In 296 career games, he is 124-107-36 with a 2.76 GAA and a, .903 save percentage to go along with 11 career shutouts.
Originally a sixth round pick of the Avs, Budaj had a 10-8-3 record last season backing up Carey Price, but fell out of of favor with the club as prospect Dustin Tokarski started over him in the playoffs when Price was injured.
“I would like to thank Peter Budaj who has been an outstanding teammate and stood tall for us over the past three seasons,” said GM Marc Bergevin in a statement. “This transaction enables our team to make room for Dustin Tokarski.”
As TVA’s Renaud Lavoie points out, the Habs save $838,000 with Tokaraski as the team’s backup over Budaj.
Both Budaj and Tokarski would’ve required waivers, so you can see why the trade was made.
Budaj provides Winnipeg with a solid No. 2 to push starter Ondrej Pavelec. Prior to the deal, the Jets had rookie Michael Hutchinson backing up Pavelec. Hutchinson has just three career NHL games on his resume.
Holland has spent the last two seasons with the American Hockey League’s Hamilton Bulldogs. Last season the 22-year-old had six goals and 17 points in 57 games. He also appeared in five games for the Canadiens where he was held without a point. Holland will likely report to the AHL’s St. John’s IceCaps.
Tangradi, who cleared waivers on Saturday, will be assigned to the Bulldogs. The 25-year-old spent the last two seasons with the Jets where he scored four goals and 10 points in 91 games. Originally an Anaheim Ducks second round pick, Tangradi also appeared in 45 games for the Pittsburgh Penguins over four seasons.
“Eric Tangradi is a young veteran with 136 NHL games under his belt. He adds depth to our group up front and provides us with more options when we will need help coming from our affiliate team in Hamilton,” said Bergevin.
Jets trim roster
In a separate transaction the Jets released six players Sunday.
Ben Chiarot and Keaton Ellerby were placed on waivers while goaltender goaltender Danny Taylor was released from his professional tryout.
Winnipeg also sent Nikolaj Ehlers, Josh Morrissey and Nic Petan back to their respective junior clubs.