David Savard Canadiens

Montreal Canadiens sign David Savard: Here’s what we can expect

The defenceman ticks off more than one box on the Habs’ offseason checklist, following the loss of Shea Weber.

The Montreal Canadiens have just announced their first major signing amidst the free agency storm — the acquiring of defenceman David Savard. And although the 30-year-old Savard has put up minimal offensive stats (41–125–166 totals) over his 10-year career, he ticks off more than one box on Montreal’s offseason checklist. 

Firstly, Savard’s veteran status and defensive skillset has provided the team with some much-needed depth. Since learning that team captain Shea Weber will likely miss the 2021–2022 season after being placed on long-term injured reserve, Savard will likely play a big role in the top 4. While he is not capable of completely replacing Weber (few players are), the 6-foot-2 right-handed defenceman will likely be able to play some heavy minutes, allowing the Habs to not leave such a massive burden on fellow defender Jeff Petry.

Montreal Canadiens sign David Savard to 4-year-deal: Here’s what we can expect

Secondly, David Savard is a francophone and Quebec native. While language is not important to most hockey fans, it certainly plays a factor here in Montreal. Earlier this year, the Canadiens famously played their first-ever game in club history without a single francophone in the lineup. Many have complained over the lack of hometown talent in recent years, and with Phillip Danault headed to Los Angeles and Jonathan Drouin’s future still uncertain, Savard brings his proud heritage to les Glorieux 

Finally, you might recognize Savard from the Stanley Cup Finals, as a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning. While seeing him in enemy colours might leave a bitter taste in some fans’ mouths, his championship experience and affordable annual salary-cap hit of $3.5-million will provide them with something sweet. 

While Savard has established his spot in the lineup, free agency has only just begun. Plenty more surprises await. ■

For the latest Montreal Canadiens offseason updates, please visit the Habs website.

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