The off-season overhaul in Montreal continues as the team announced Tuesday that they have acquired forward Dustin Boyd, goaltender Dan Ellis and future considerations from the Nashville Predators in exchange for Sergei Kostitsyn and future considerations.
The trade ends the younger Kostitsyn brother's controversial tenure in Montreal. The 23-year old Belarusian had seven goals and 11 assists in 47 games with the Habs this season, but he was suspended by the team this past October for failing to report to Hamilton of the AHL after being demoted.
He was also told to stay away from the Canadiens prior to Game 4 of their Eastern Conference semi-final series with the Penguins for his poor attitude and work habits. He was publicly criticized by goaltender Carey Price for his lack of effort in practice.
He also starred for Belarus at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, picking up two goals and three assists in five games.
With increased ice-time in Nashville, he should be able to add an offensive punch to the team, but the Predators will still need to sign him to a contract as he is set to become a restricted free agent on July 1.
Originally a seventh round draft choice, 200th overall by the Canadiens in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kostitsyn has 24 goals and 44 assists in155 career games.
In return, the Canadiens receive a solid goaltender in the 30-year old Ellis and a depth forward in Boyd. However, both players are set to become unrestricted free agents on July 1.
Although Ellis does not yet have a new contract he immediately sent a message to his followers on Twitter, stating that he was thrilled to join the Canadiens.
"Very excited about the trade! It's an honor to be part of a team with such great tradition and passion! Hope we can figure something out!" (twitter.com/dellis39)
Ellis posted a .909 save percentage and 2.69 goals against average in 31 games last season with the Preds, while Boyd had 11 goals and 13 assists in 78 games.