With the NHL's free agent signing period looming quickly, it doesn't appear that Marc Bergevin will be looking at making any big splashes.
The Montreal Canadiens general manager held court with reporters at the World Juniors announcement at the Bell Centre on Thursday and hinted that the team won't be looking at headline-making changes through the open market.
"History shows that free agency isn't the best tool," he said. "Free agency to me is a tool but it's not a way to make your team a top team. It's overplayed. You have to be careful."
Bergevin's first dive into free agency last year saw the Canadiens target character players in forwards Brandon Prust and Colby Armstrong along with returning blueliner Francis Bouillon. Prust was the Canadiens' unsung hero this season, while Bouillon - who signed a contract extension in April - helped tutor young blueliners like Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu on the third pairing.
With Tinordi and Beaulieu likely seeing more playing time in Montreal next season, the Habs will be looking to further deepen their prospect pool with six picks in the first three rounds of next week's NHL Draft.
"When you're at (number) 25 you're sitting at the back of the bus," said Bergevin of his team's impressive regular season finish and early playoff exit. "(The) early seconds, No. 34 and 36 - those are really good picks. They're appealing picks."