Habs start using Aho money with Chiarot deal

How the big numbers behind the Aho offer sheet impact the Hurricanes (2:07)

The TSN Free Agent Frenzy crew explains what Montreal giving an offer sheet to Sebastian Aho means for Carolina. (2:07)

MONTREAL -- The Canadiens began using the money they won't be paying Sebastian Aho by signing defenseman Ben Chiarot to a three-year, $10.5 million contract.

Montreal had signed Aho to a five-year, $42.7 million offer sheet, but Carolina intends to match that contract and keep its best player. The Canadiens can't give an offer sheet to another player until the Hurricanes officially match.

The 28-year-old Chiarot will count $3.5 million against the salary cap in each of the next three seasons. The 6-foot-3, 219-pound left-shooting blueliner had a career-high 20 points (five goals, 15 assists) and 62 penalty minutes in 78 games with the Winnipeg Jets last season.

The Hamilton, Ontario, native has 64 points (12 goals, 52 assists) in 305 career regular-season games, all with Winnipeg. He has three assists in 24 career playoff games.