On Wednesday, the Habs announced that defenceman Francis Bouillon has agreed
to a one year extension through the 2013-14 season. Although the club did
not disclose the salary figure, it was later revealed that the 37 year old will
earn $1.5 million next year, the same salary which he is presently receiving.
Bouillon is in his third stint with the club (a brief trip to and from
Nashville via the waiver wire in 2002-03 was his second) after signing a
contract quickly into free agency this past July. He has been a mainstay
on Montreal’s third defence pairing all season, playing in all 29 games and
averaging over a minute and a half more per game than he did with the Predators
in 2011-12. On the year, he has a goal and seven assists with eight
The 5’8 undrafted blueliner joined the Habs’ organization in the 1998-99
season with Fredericton, their AHL affiliate. He finished third on the
team in scoring that season, earning a full time promotion to the Canadiens the
follow year. He recently played his 500th career game with the Habs
earlier this month and just last week played in his 700th career contest.
In his career, Bouillon has picked 30 goals and 111 assists.
The contract means the team has seven defencemen on one way contracts next
season (although the expected release of Tomas Kaberle via the clubs’ second
compliance buyout will bring that back to six). Montreal now has just
three pending unrestricted free agents: Peter Budaj plus forwards Colby
Armstrong and Michael Ryder.
In other news today, the Habs reassigned forward Alexander Avtsin to the
ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers, their shared affiliate in that league. Also sent
down from Hamilton were Antoine Corbin and Daultan Leveille who will join San
Francisco. The club will soon announce the signing of Alex Belzile to a
tryout and likely will add another player or two in the coming days.