According to a report from Montreal Canadiens blog Habs Eyes on the Prize, the Habs have signed HC Skoda Plzen defensemen Michal Moravcik and David Sklenicka to NHL contracts.
BREAKING: #Habs sign Czech defencemen Michal Moravčík and David Sklenička to contracts
Both Moravcik and Sklenicka were members of the Czech national team that competed in the recent 2018 IIHF World Championships in Denmark. While the Czechs were eliminated in the quarterfinals by team USA, both Moravcik and Sklenicka earned interest from several NHL teams and it’s believed that they had offers from the KHL, as well. Ultimately though, the pair have elected to sign with the Habs as a package deal. It’s likely that the 23 year old Moravcik and 21 year old Sklenicka will start the 2018-19 in the AHL with the team’s affiliate Laval Rocket.
Update: While the Habs have yet to confirm the news today, the players’ former Czech team has. Check out the full report on their official website here.
Here’s the full scouting report on the two young Czechs, courtesy of Habs Eyes on the Prize:
Moravčík is 23 years old and is a left-handed defenceman. He is 6’4, 212 and had five goals and 11 assists in 52 games. He added three goals and four assists in 10 playoff games and had a goal and two assists in eight games at the World Championships. He has played 189 career games in the Czech Extraliga (11G-28A-39P) at the senior level.
Sklenička is only 21 years old, and despite his age has already played 148 games in the Extraliga (10G-21A-31P). He is also a left-handed shot and is 5’11, 181. He had three goals and 11 assists in 49 games this season. He added a goal and an assist in 10 playoff games. He had two assists in eight games at the World Championships.
Good signings? This news combined with last week’s signing of backup goaltender Antti Niemi just go to prove that Habs general manager Marc Bergevin is NOT wasting any time this offseason. After being criticized for the way he mismanaged his roster last offseason, the Habs GM knows he’ll be under intense scrutiny this offseason.