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PWHL Montreal Re-Signs Free Agent To New Deal

Mikayla Grant-Mentis

PWHL Montreal announced this week that they signed free agent Mikayla Grant-Mentis for a one-year deal.  The contract numbers have not been shared. However, Montreal is bringing back a well-known goal scorer who plays intensely and thrives in clutch time. 

“Mikyla helped our team from the moment she got to Montréal last season,” said Montréal general manager Danièle Sauvageau in a press release. “We are bringing back a player who raises her level of play when the stakes are high, as she showed us during the final stretch of our season and during the playoffs.”

Grant-Mentis was the highest-paid player in the now-defunct Premier Hockey Federation (PHF). She played for the Buffalo Beauts and the Toronto Six and became the league’s MVP in 2021. Her PWHL career started with Ottawa, where she signed as an undrafted free agent. PWHL Ottawa released her in February. A month later, she signed with Montreal.

What Does Mikayla Grant-Mentis Bring Back to Montreal?

In 13 games played, Grant-Mentis scored five points between the two clubs. With Ottawa, it seemed as though the 25-year-old struggled to find her groove. After the trade, Grant-Mentis saw top-line minutes. She was utilized for what she does well—winning puck battles along the boards, getting pucks in deep, scoring shots on goal, and carrying the puck well through the neutral zone. 

“There were reasons Ottawa released her and there were reasons we were interested in her,” said GM Sauvageau to Habs Eyes On The Prize at the time of the team signing her. “There are a lot of games left, she knows how to play hockey. I often say we’re all flowers but sometimes we’re not always in the right pot. Sometimes we can find ourselves in too much sun, too much shade, more water, less water. There are plenty of players, even if you look at the Montreal Canadiens, that you would have bet they wouldn’t make it who succeed night after night.”

Now that she has a new contract and if confirmed to be rejoining Montreal, Grant-Mentis could be on the top line with teammates Marie-Philip Poulin and Laura Stacey. She could also be on the power play, given her scoring prowess. Even if she didn’t total as many points last season as she had in the past, it does not mean she won’t contribute in other areas. Those are the types of players Montreal needs to focus on. 

Montreal’s Outlook With Grant-Mentis

PWHL Montreal’s collapse against Boston in the playoffs was a devastating blow to a team that not many were looking at to win the Walter Cup. As the second seed, they faced a Boston team that was talented, and had a few lucky bounces to help them along their way. 

How does Montreal avoid a repeat of what happened last season in the playoffs? They drafted pretty well, which was important as it wasn’t guaranteed that Grant-Mentis would re-sign. Getting Cayla Barnes in the first round and potentially adding Amanda Kessel are great additions to a solid foundation. Grant-Mentis will also play a large role in ensuring success for the franchise. She will fill in nicely in the top six. If Grant-Mentis isn’t a top-six forward (which seems unlikely given how she already has played top minutes in the league and has the experience to do so), she will bolster the bottom half of the forward core with her ability to see the ice and scoring capabilities. 

Grant-Mentis has a long trip to Montreal. She is a great addition to the roster and saw her impact happen almost immediately. She will help them chase the Walter Cup for another year.

Main photo by: Michael Longo/For USA Today Network / USA TODAY NETWORK


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