By Nick Villano @nick_villano on May 30, 2014
The Montreal Canadiens are fresh off losing Game 6 to the New York Rangers, eliminating them from the playoffs in the Eastern Conference Finals. With a team that went so far, you would think that their changes would be minimal, but with a ton of free agents and million in cap space, that will not be the case. These five players will be wearing different sweaters in 2014-15.
Douglas Murray has had an interesting career in the NHL. The big-guy defenseman was in and out of the lineup all season. He was only used for three playoff games this year. The Canadiens are going to try and find defensive help elsewhere.
The need for players like George Parros in the NHL just isn't there anymore. Parros is one of the best fighting forwards in the league, but the league as a whole is going in another direction. It will be interesting to see what teams look to go after the 34-year-old Princeton grad. It won't take a lot of money to sign him, but will teams be willing to give him time on the ice?
It is clear that Dustin Tokarski is ready to take on the backup goalie role behind Carey Price after his performance against the Rangers in the ECF. The only problem is Peter Budaj still has one more year left on his contract. There is no way he will go into next season with Montreal. There is a market for backup goalies, as we saw with this year's trading deadline.
Will the Canadiens really let their captain walk after he just led them to the ECF? He is going to want more money than his team is willing to pay. The Canadiens are going to look for huge names, and Gionta just isn't that, whether that's fair or not. If they were going to pay him, they wouldn't have let it get this far.
The Canadiens showed how much they cared for Thomas Vanek when they played him about 12 minutes per game in the ECF. There is no chance in heck that he comes back. He is going to play for the team that pays him the most money.
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