The Montreal Canadiens have traded forward David Desharnais to the Edmonton Oilers for defenceman Brandon Davidson.

Desharnais, 31, has 10 points in 31 games with the Canadiens this season. His best season to date was the 2011-12 season where he had 16 goals and 44 assists for 60 points in 81 games.

Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty addressed the trade following Montreal's 1-0 overtime win over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night.

"I believe in Davey. He's always proved people wrong and maybe he needed a change of scenery," Pacioretty told reporters.

An undrafted free agent coming out of the QMJHL, the Laurier-Station, Quebec native signed a two-year, two-way contract with the Canadiens in 2008 after a successful season with their then-ECHL affiliate, the Cincinnati Cyclones.

Desharnais has a cap hit of $3.5 million and is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. According to TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun, the Canadiens will retain 20 per cent of Desharnais' salary in the trade.

Davidson has one assist in 28 games played with the Oilers this season, his third with the team.

The 25-year-old signed a two-year, $2.85 million contract on Feb. 29, 2016.

The Lethbridge, Alberta native has five goals and eight assists in 91 career games with the Oilers.

The team drafted him in the sixth round (162nd overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.