Friday, July 22, 2011
Canadiens sign Josh Gorges to 1 Year Deal
The Montreal Canadiens announced this evening the signing of defenseman Josh Gorges to a 1 year, $2.5M deal.
Pierre Gauthier has now completed all internal dossiers for the coming season, and any further moves would be additional outside acquisitions.
Gorges had filed for arbitration with a hearing scheduled for July 28th. One would have to think with comparables like Marc Methot ($3M) and Roman Polak ($2.75M), an arbitrator might have awarded a little more than Gorges settled for, but given his injury last year, the short term gives him a new opportunity to prove his worth. So good deal money-wise, but the term is a little scary because...
In fact, he will have great leverage next summer, as he may opt to become an unrestricted free agent next July 1st. The Canadiens are not likely to let it come to that, as Gorges has been an important part of the back end, but the team is starting to amass significant organizational depth on the back end for the future, so they will be able to reassess their plans in just under one year's time.
Per Renaud Lavoie, Gauthier opted for a short term due to concerns over Gorges' recovery from surgery and wants to ensure he will be healthy this season before making a longer commitment.
The Habs now have 12 forwards, 7 defensemen, and 2 goaltenders under NHL contract for 2011-12, with $5,179,490 in cap space remaining. They will need to add at least one more forward, but may decide to leave it opening for a training camp battle between the likes of Andreas Engqvist and Michael Blunden.