How the Canadiens’ complicated cap situation will determine some of the final roster moves – The Athletic


Being an NHL coach in the salary-cap age is not always simple. You have to answer questions that are not necessarily in your area of expertise and that you may not fully understand.

Dominique Ducharme was in that position Thursday evening after the Canadiens’ 5-4 shootout loss to the Ottawa Senators in their final tune-up of the preseason. He was asked about the factors involved in making the final decisions about the opening-night roster.

That’s when the salary cap reared its ugly head.

“We’re waiting for a couple of answers from the league to see exactly how we can handle the situation,” Ducharme said. “We have a couple of options, and that may affect (them).”

What Ducharme was referring to was the announcement earlier in the day that goaltender Carey Price had entered the NHL/NHLPA player assistance program, which comes with a minimum 30-day absence from team activities. At the time Ducharme was answering those questions, neither he nor the team knew whether Price’s $10.5 million salary could be placed on long-term injured reserve (LTIR). The minimum number of games and days a player must miss to be admissible for LTIR is 10 games and 24 days, thresholds Price will surely meet with the Canadiens playing their 10th game on Oct. 31.

On Friday morning, according to a source, the Canadiens got their answer from the NHL.