Nathan Beaulieu of the Montreal Canadiens has been traded to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for a 3rd round pick (68th overall) in the 2017 entry draft.
This move in essence is Bergevin telling the hockey world “I want to protect Jordie Benn, and I want to get something in return for Nathan Beaulieu before he is taken by Vegas.” This really should not come as a surprise to anyone, Beaulieu is 24 years old and has not developed to anywhere near the point that the Montreal franchise had hoped. He shows some offensive flair, but lacks in the back end and can often be seen making poor passes and decisions. Beaulieu was supposed to be a player that could come in and fill a valuable defensive role on the team, but was never really able to make it past the bottom pairing. The decision to leave Beaulieu as a healthy scratch right at the end of the season could be taken as either a sign of lost faith, or just that he was put in the scratch rotation to keep people sharp, I will leave that decision up to you. Beaulieu showcased decent point production in his last couple season with Montreal, and hopefully he can fine-tune the other aspects of his game and become a valuable asset for either Buffalo or Vegas in the near future.
Montreal will not struggle to fill the hole that the loss of Beaulieu has created, with many defensive prospects in wait with the potential to reach at least that level. This was a smart move by Bergevin to get something for Beaulieu, because if he was exposed, that would be an almost sure pick for Vegas in the upcoming expansion draft.