AUDIO: Six years, $30 million, no-trade clause locks up Plekanec for long term

Centreman Tomas Plekanec’s no-trade clause will keep him in Montreal for six seasons.
Bruce Bennett, Getty Images

AUDIO: Tomas Plekanec conference call

Tomas Plekanec probably could have fetched more on the open market, an unrestricted free agent come July 1.

But the popular centreman likes Montreal, made no secret of that and, like defenceman Andrei Markov before him a few seasons ago, chose to pass on the UFA route by today signing a six-year contract estimated to be worth $30 million.

Plekanec has a no-trade clause in the deal, but he wouldn’t say for how much of the contract that exists. He also wouldn’t address whose idea it was to sign for six years, referring both points to GM Pierre Gauthier.

The native of Kladno, Czech Republic had a career-best 70 points during the 2009-2010 season (25
goals and 45 assists). He was also a fixture on the team’s power-play and penalty-killing units while taking important defensive zone faceoffs.

Although only 5-foot-11 and generously listed at 198 pounds, Plekanec has missed only four games over the last four seasons.

There was speculation he could have drawn as much as $6 million per in the UFA market. He was the 71st overall by Montreal in the third round of the 2001 NHL Entry
Draft and has played his entire career with the Canadiens.

The signings today of Plekanec and Mathieu Darche leave the Canadiens with less than $9 million in salary cap space. Still unsigned: Carey Price, Benoit Pouliot, Tom Pyatt, Dominic Moore, Glen Metropolit, Maxim Lapierre, Marc-André Bergeron and Sergei Kostitsyn.

Mike Boone and Kevin Mio contributed to this post wih early reporting.

Canadiens’ release on Tomas Plekanec:


  1. mrstewart61 says:

    Gorges for captian.  During the playoffs I heard a player or maybe Martin say that if you were to poll the  players they’d pick Josh.



    If a man speaks in a forest where no woman can hear him, is he still wrong?

  2. punkster says:

    Why can’t we all just get along?…Idiot!


  3. avatar_58 says:

    My opinion has swayed more to Cammalleri the last few months. He carries the team some nights, calls people out (and it worked for laps didn’t it??) and is very media friendly.


    Pleks is now our “good old boy” who is now here for 6 friggen years. That’s worth something. Markov is out so unless they wait till next year for a C I’d rather not see our captain injured day 1. So in terms of vet habs Plek is it.

    So my opinion is Plek or Cammy.

  4. Chuck says:

    “All we are saying… is Give Peace a Chance!”


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  5. punkster says:

    You know Andrew, we’ll see a bunch of people putting up rational arguments for disagreeing with this move. And they’re welcome to do so. Nothing wrong with voicing an opinion. However there will also be about 3 or 4 guys on here tonight that will bitch and moan about this and try to pick fights with anyone who disagrees with them. Nothing wrong with disagreeing but I say we see how many people we can convince not to enter into a pissing contest with them. Wouldn’t it be nice to have an evening discussion with minimal personal insults and player trashing? (sigh…I doubt that’s gonna happen though).


  6. crabvader says:

    Good as long as he can stay on his feet.

  7. pic1983 says:

    Totally agree with you.  $5 Million is the most I would have given him as well, but I think it shows his commitment to montreal.  He would have been the second best center available, and considering the fact that he wouldn’t command Marleau type money, he probably would have been the most sought after.

    Im sure a few full season alongside Cammy will produce great results. 

  8. darcy1 says:

    don’t get me wrong, I hope for our team’s sake I eat lots (and lots and lots) of crow.. i just don’t think he’ll put up these kind of numbers on a consistent basis when he’s not the clear cut #1 center without 2 solid wingers.

    speaking of finding a 2nd solid winger … how would Pouliot look beside Plek & Cammi?

  9. Habsrule1 says:

    I agree with whoever mentioned this is a great character move by Plekanec. To me, this shows he was more valuable than I thought. although I personally think $5M is the max i would have given him, he still signed with us instead of waiting a week for the free agency frency, where he very possibly could have gotten more, or at least just as much to play in a less pressurized city with less taxes.

    I have a whole new respect for him, and now i only hope he plays like he did this past season….or better, of course!

    Go Habs Go!! “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

  10. puck face says:

    too much. 4 years 4.5 is what i wanted. 6 years should have been 4.25. if he can score 65-70 a season i’ll be happy.

  11. von says:

    I think this is a good deal for both sides.


    Plekanec could have easily waited till July 1st and got more money. This contract will allow the Habs to possibly still shop him if the right deal appears, depending on whether he has a NTC of course.


    He’s a no-show in the playoffs but like Boone has already said, who in the hell do we have as our #2 centre? Not too mention the work he does for our PK.



    “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

  12. punkster says:

    Let the games begin!


  13. crabvader says:

    We still have 7mil in cap space with the possibility of AK, SK and Hamr going out the door.

    I don’t really see Hamr going anywhere since Markov is injured, though.

  14. Mark C says:

    The 2nd assists element is not really correct. Tomas last season was 0.64 per 60 mins. with 1st assists and 0.42 per 60 mins. for 2nd, so most of his assists were not 2nd assists.

  15. Chuck says:



    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  16. habsfan_61 says:

    pleasantly surprised. good signing.term is fine and i assume the cap hit goes up annually. i expect moves to be made to fit the players into the cap structure. wonder who stays and who goes.

  17. CBrady12 says:

    Jagrs back baby!

  18. punkster says:

    Let’s get this over with right away, shall we Chuck?

    You’re an idiot!!!



  19. andrewberkshire says:

    Great deal for the Habs and for Plekanec. Took 5 million a year when he easily could have got 6+ on the UFA market. He wasn’t lying when he said he wanted to stay with the Habs, and with a 6 year contract we have him locked up for virtually his entire prime.

  20. SeriousFan09 says:

    Considering he often only had one good linemate at a time and sometimes had two dead men with him, 70P is pretty good I would think, if he played with Cammalleri all year and had a second linemate who was active all year 80+ is not a crazy concept.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  21. CBrady12 says:

    There are actually many guys who could wear an ‘A’ cammy, gill, georges, pleks, gomez, gionta (probably captain), markov, even lapierre

  22. DavidKB says:

    Agreed, Gionta gets the C and Plekanec gets an A.

  23. Curtis O Habs says:

    Credit Gainey for signing him to a one year deal so Pleks had a shot at redemption.

  24. crabvader says:

    How about 2007-2008? He put up 69 points, just one point off of this year’s total.


  25. punkster says:

    I’m fine wit this. Slightly higher than the $4.5 I remember discussing with some here earlier in the year. Worth it.

    Who will be the first to trash this deal and Pleks himself. I mean really trash, not just say they don’t like it, but go way overboard, rant and rave, quote fictitious stats, use the words “little girl” in a derogatory manner?


  26. Chuck says:

    I’m guessing that the conversation this evening will be dominated by “Pleks vs. Halak: who’s MORE worth $5 million per season?”


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  27. darcy1 says:

    problem is we paid for him having a career year… i don’t think he’s going to put up 70 pt yearly like we saw this year, but i agree with you that 08-09 was an off year.

  28. Sakus Evil Twin says:

    I’d love to know how this deal pans out over six years… here’s hoping that it’s an upslider or one that peaks at year 4 so we’re not carrying 5 mil per year against Gomez.

    Given that this year was Plek’s contract year I will cuss him wilfully and make unbecoming and disparaging remarks if he tails off this year and reverts to his ‘little girl’ persona.

    Someone mentioned that Colby Armstrong was on the radar.

    I kind of like that idea. 


    No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

  29. Hockey Socks says:

    Wow, I was not expecting him to sign! The lack of size still hurts, yes, but I think $5 million is fair. He would’ve gotten more on the open market and considering the tax issue in Quebec – Pleky took a hometown discount. Nice to see a player drafted and developed by the organization sticking around longterm.

    Now lets get him a big winger! Byfuglien’s on the block, Gauthier, DO IT!

  30. Mike from Ktown says:

    Would be nice to have two big solid wingers on those top two lines. I really like the speed and grit the big (small) four bring. Gomer – Gionta, Plek – Cams work really well together. Give them a big body presence in front of the net and watch out.

  31. DavidKB says:

    Plekanec is the kind of player the Habs need to keep. I predict he will improve upon his stats next season.

  32. Rugger says:

    25 goals, 45 A’s.  Isn’t that pretty good ratio for a center?

  33. petrov14 says:

    Id now like to see Plekanec get an ‘A’ for his sweater.

    ______________________________________ Gionta for Captain.

  34. CBrady12 says:

    Who would that player have been? There arent exactly many options

  35. RJ says:


    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  36. crabvader says:

    Ask Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin if Tomas Plekanec disappeared during the playoffs.

    2nd assists? You’re hilarious.

  37. Les-Habitants says:

    I still like Gionta with the C

  38. Storm Man says:

    A good deal for number 14 glad he is staying. Now the draft is up next hope PG makes a deal or two.

  39. rogieshan says:

    Plekanec was true to his word about wanting to stay. Maybe he should be named captain. 

  40. 123456 says:

    good news, i really thought the habs would let him go.

  41. crabvader says:

    For people who call Plekanec soft: How many games has he missed? I
    remember last year he missed a total of 2 for slew-footing Grebeshkov.
    He is NEVER injured.

    He doesn’t get paid to hit people. He gets
    paid to produce.

    On that note, how many times did he have
    revolving wingers this past season? He still managed to put up 70

    He killed penalties, wreaked havoc on Malkin and Crosby
    during the playoffs and played 106 games total this year with the
    Olympics and playoffs.

    He may not be the most physical of players
    but WHO CARES! He put up 70 points and rebounded off a bad season! The
    season before he also had 69 points!

    I mean, if you want to hold
    last season against him it doesn’t change the fact that he’s scored over
    20 goals for the past 4 seasons now! And with the exception of
    2008-2009, he’s a PLUS PLAYER!

    Physical or not, that means he
    plays on the good side of the ice and produces more goals than he allows
    on his line.

    You people that complain about him (and you are
    few, trust me) need to re-think your logic before you piss yourselves
    again over it.

  42. Mike says:


    cap is an estimated 59 million. We have 39 million committed 7 players to Gomez, Cammy, Gionta, Pleks, Hammerlik, Markov, Spacek.  NOT LIKING THIS SIGNING. but it all leads back to the idea that our top 2 lines should not be on the p.k.  If we took them off the p.k. they would be less tired and get more playing time 5 on 5.

  43. RedLight says:

    Great deal, very pleased.

    For those who feel it’s too much… I think if we saw someone else sign him for $4.5, we’d label that a steal. An extra $500k to keep him here is fine by me, there are few forwards in the league who can claim his versatility.

  44. nickster13 says:

    trade AK for a guy who actually shoots and hits the net!!!

  45. smiler2729 says:

    $5 million a year for a defensive forward (yeah yeah yeah, 75 pts with most of ’em being 2nd assists) who disappears in playoffs!?!?!


  46. SeriousFan09 says:

    If Plekanec gets a 2nd linemate who can actually play, he’ll top 70 points easily I think. Often this year he was stuck with at least one non-active participant on his line.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  47. CBrady12 says:

    Wasnt Tomas one of the only forwards in the league who led his team in scoring and penalty killing or something like that?

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