Sergei K dealt to Nashville

Goaltender Dan Ellis has seen all kinds of skaters up close during his career.
Todd Karol, Reuters

• TSN’s Bob McKenzie wonders: Could Price and Ellis co-exist in Montreal?

The Canadiens have traded Sergei Kostitsyn to the Nashville Predators for forward Dustin Boyd, goaltender Dan Ellis and future considerations. The deal also includes future considerations for the Predators.

Ellis, who turned 30 last week, played in 31 games last season, posting a 15-13-1 record. His GAA was 2.69, with a save percentage of 90.9. His career numbers are 2.64 and 91.2.

Ellis’s cap hit was $1.8 million last season, and Ellis can become an unrestricted free agent on July 1.

Via Twitter, Ellis had this to say: “Very excited about the trade! Its an honor to be part of a team with such great tradition and passion! Hope we can figure something out!”

Boyd, a 6-foot centre who will be 24 next month, split last season between the Predators and Calgary Flames. He collected 11 goals, including three game-winners, and 13 assists in 78 games. He was plus-6 while averaging 12:13 ToI. Boyd, whose cap hit was $700,000, is an RFA who did not get a qualifying offer, which makes him a UFA is he’s not signed by Thursday.

Kostitsyn quickly fell out of favour with head coach Jacques Martin last season and split the season between Montreal and the Hamilton Bulldogs. He had seven goals and 11 assists in 47 games with the Canadiens.

As Arpon
Basu
points out, the Canadiens have found a back-up and mentor for
Carey Price – if Ellis signs – and a fourth-line centre who’s younger,
cheaper, tougher and faster than Glen Metropolit.

And the team has
purged itself of the malignancy that is SK74 – safely dispatched to
the Western Conference, just in case he ever turns into the player he
thinks he is. Over/under on visits to the Grand Ole Opry before he’s barred: 2.

The deal ends popular speculation that the Canadiens would happily trade Sergei Kostitsyn for a dog – and shoot the dog.

Subtle bonus if something works out with Ellis: a non-francophone backup – as opposed to, say, Martin Biron – means the usual suspects won’t be whining for a homeboy Number One every time Price lets in a bad goal.

Pierre Gauthier, Man of Action … and still two
sleeps till FA Day.

Shout-out to Jarred Friedman for finding a good Dan Ellis interview

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The authoritative McKeen’s Hockey Guide on Boyd:

“A slick,
industrious playmaker with good poise and vision … agile skater,
generates deceptive quickness from bentover stride, though could use a
stronger top gear … makes sharp cuts/spins with the puck and possesses
a nice wide stickhandling range … not overly tall yet can still
separate bigger opponents from the puck thanks to solid balance and
lower-body strength …getting stronger on the puck and more effective
in traffic will allow him to better exploit a good shot and sharp
finishing touch … has steadily improved his defensive reads and
positioning …”

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