Red Wings trade Jon Merrill to Canadiens for 5th-round pick, Hayden Verbeek

Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jon Merrill plays during the third period of an NHL hockey game, Sunday, March 28, 2021, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio) (Carlos Osorio, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

The Detroit Red Wings have traded defenseman Jon Merrill to the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a 5th-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft and forward Hayden Verbeek.

Merrill was not in Detroit’s lineup Saturday in Carolina, signaling a trade on the horizon. The trade deadline is 3 p.m. Monday.

The Red Wings first acquired Merrill in October through free agency, signing him to a one-year deal. He has 5 assists, no goals, through 36 games played this season.

The 29-year-old former Michigan Wolverine spent the previous three seasons with the Vegas Golden Knights. He was drafted 38th overall in 2010 by the New Jersey Devils.

Verbeek, 21, went undrafted after five years with the OHL’s Soo Greyhounds. He scored 30 goals and 31 assists in 67 games played his final season with the Greyhounds. He signed with the Canadiens in 2018 and spent the past three seasons in the ECHL and AHL. He has 3 points in seven games with Laval Rocket this season in the AHL.

Verbeek is the nephew of Detroit assistant GM Pat Verbeek, who scored 522 goals in 1,424 career NHL games including two seasons with the Red Wings between 1999 and 2001.

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