The Devils drafted Matteau in the first round, 29th overall, in 2012. He has three goals and five points in 44 career games with New Jersey.
The Canadiens will find out if there’s an ounce of offensive upside remaining in Matteau’s game. Montreal has holes on their first three lines which means that Matteau could see some meaningful minutes for the first time in his NHL career.
The 22-year-old is the son of former NHLer Stephane Matteau.
Smith-Pelly was acquired from the Ducks last season, but failed to make a lasting impression on the Canadiens brass. The 23-year-old plays a heavy game, but lacks the ideal skill and speed to be a regular contributor on a team’s top three lines.
Matteau has one year remaining on his contract at a cap hit of $650,000 while Smith-Pelly will be a restricted free agent at the end of the season.