Report: Canadiens acquire Erik Gustafsson from Flyers for 2022 7th-round pick

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PHILADELPHIA, PA - MARCH 22:  Erik Gustafsson #56 of the Philadelphia Flyers skates against the New York Islanders at the Wells Fargo Center on March 22, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)
Erik Gustafsson is a ready-made contributor for the Montreal Canadiens. (Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)

The Montreal Canadiens have improved their defense corps, adding Erik Gustafsson in a trade with the Philadelphia Flyers, as first reported by Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman

Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic reports Montreal is sending a 2022 seventh-round pick in return, while Philadelphia retains 50 percent of Gustafsson's salary.   

Gustafsson recorded a goal and 10 points in 24 games with the Flyers, boasting strong possession metrics while averaging 17:24 per game.  

The 29-year-old is slated to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year, while the Canadiens ought to make a good-faith effort to retain the left-shot blueliner.  

This is a solid move by Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin, who has managed to find a solid left-shot contributor for minimal cost, operating under the assumption that he'll re-sign Gustafsson this summer. For the immediate present, Gustafsson helps shore up a strong Montreal defense corps that has been elevated by Jeff Petry's standout campaign to date.      

Montreal is holding onto the fourth and final playoff spot in the North Division, with several games in hand over its divisional rivals. By all accounts, Bergevin is positioning the Canadiens for an ambitious run, and while Gustafsson is far from the day's biggest headliner, it's a solid acquisition with minimal risk and cost attached.     

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