The Montreal Canadiens have signed forward Kirby Dach to a four-year contract with a cap of $3.3625 million.
Dach was a restricted free agent after completing his entry-level contract which he played with the Chicago Blackhawks. He was a third overall pick for the team in 2019, so that contract must never have slipped away as he has been playing with the team since his draft year. The Canadiens acquired Dach in the 2022 NHL Draft in exchange for the New York Islanders first-round pick the Canadiens got for trading Alexander Romanov and their own third-round pick.
Dach has struggled in the NHL, failing to achieve third overall pedigree so far in his career. He has just 19 goals, 40 assists and 59 points in 152 career games, with the 2021-22 season seeing his career totals with nine goals, 17 assists and 26 points in 70 games.
These struggles continue on the defensive side of the ice, as he has struggled mightily in that regard. He has a shot attempt share of 45.73% and an expected goal share of 45.59% at even strength so far in his career, although playing for an uncompetitive Blackhawks team certainly doesn’t help. . Those numbers are also bumped up a bit when playing with Patrick Kane, who has his own struggles with the driving game, but that’s also a concern for his scoring if he can’t score points with a strong playmaker like Kane. .
With the signing, the Canadiens find themselves more than $10.2 million above the salary cap with every contract considered, although with Carey Price out for the season and on long-term injured reserve, that puts them just below the salary cap of around $300,000. The team made a few big deals this offseason outside of the Dach trade, including the aforementioned Romanov to the Islanders, the trade of Jeff Petry to the Penguins for Mike Matheson, and the transfer of Shea Weber’s contract to the Golden Knights from Vegas in exchange for Evgeni Dadonov.