December 1, 2017 | 10:19am ET



Brandon Davidson, defenceman


The Montreal Canadiens have won four-straight games since superstar goalie Carey Price returned to the lineup and suddenly the team has jumped back in the playoff mix.

The Habs are now third in the Atlantic Division, one point ahead of the Boston Bruins and five up on the Ottawa Senators, though both clubs have four games in hand. 

Montreal's latest trend upwards has calmed the heart-on-their-sleeve fan-base, but neither that nor the team's solid play of late has changed GM Marc Bergevin's mindset -- he is still looking to improve his hockey club.

Bergevin has already been exploring the trade market, searching for a top-four defenseman and a top-six forward, preferably a center.

It has been widely speculated that the Canadiens are dangling the likes of forwards Andrew Shaw and Jacob De La Rose, while Sportsnet's Eric Engels reported on Thursday that defenseman Brandon Davidson is also available.

Trade talk has picked up league-wide, with the Anaheim Ducks and New Jersey Devils pulling the trigger on a significant deal on Thursday that saw the Devils send Adam Henrique, Joseph Blandisi and third-round draft pick to the Ducks for Sami Vatanen and a conditional third-round pick.

It's unclear if Bergevin is close to an impactful move, having a minor-league yesterday that sent center Peter Holland to the New York Rangers yesterday for right wing Adam Cracknell, but he is most certainly manning the phones and exploring his options.

Shaw, 26, has four-years left on his contract beyond this season and comes with a $3.9 million salary cap hit, while De La Rose, 22, and Davidson, 26, are in the final year of their deals and can become restricted free agents next July.

According to Engels, the Habs sent out an email to the 30 other NHL clubs notifying them that Davidson was on the trade block.

The Canadiens could try to package Davidson and perhaps Shaw or another asset for help at either end of the rink, however moving Shaw may result in a forward coming back as part of a deal.