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Canadiens sign Lacasse and Stewart

Tuesday, 30.05.2006 / 12:00 AM / News
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Canadiens sign Lacasse and Stewart


Gregory Stewart (left) and Loïc Lacasse were the Canadiens' sixth and eighth round selections, respectively, in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft.

PRESS RELEASE

MONTREAL - Montreal Canadiens General Manager Bob Gainey announced Tuesday the signing of goaltender Loïc Lacasse and forward Gregory Stewart to three-year contracts. As per club policy, financial terms of the deals are not disclosed.

Selected by the Canadiens in the sixth round, 181st overall, in the 2004 NHL Draft, Lacasse, 20, completed his third season in the QMJHL in 2005-06. In 33 games with Baie-Comeau and Drummondville, the Granby native posted a record of 12 wins and 15 losses, a 4.03 goals against average and a .882 save percentage. During the playoffs, the 6-foot-3, 165-pound goaltender played in five of Drummondville's seven games, posting a 3-2 record, a 2.78 goals against average and a .899 save percentage. Trailing 3-0 in the first round against the Gatineau Olympiques, Lacasse led the Voltigeurs to three consecutive wins to tie the series, before losing the seventh and final game 3-2.

Lacasse played in 41 games in his rookie season with the Baie-Comeau Drakkar in 2003-04. He was traded to the Acadie-Bathurst Titan on December 19, 2005 in a deal involving five players (including the Canadiens' ninth round pick in 2004, Alex Dulac-Lemelin) and four draft picks. The same day, Lacasse was traded to the Drummondville Voltigeurs with a fourth round pick in 2007, in return for forward Maxime Joyal and a first round selection in 2007 (acquired from Bathurst).

Selected by the Canadiens in the eighth round, 246th overall, in 2004, Stewart completed his third season with the Peterborough Petes of the Ontario Hockey League in 2005-06. In 60 games, the Waterloo, Ontario native recorded 24 goals and 15 assists for 39 points, and 83 penalty minutes. He posted a plus/minus rating of plus-18.

Stewart, 20, contributed to the Petes' OHL Championship in 2005-06, Peterborough's first J. Ross Robertson Cup since 1996. The Petes defeated the London Knights in four games in the OHL Finals. Stewart registered seven points (one goal, six assists) in 19 playoff games. He added one goal in four games in the 2006 Memorial Cup Tournament held in Moncton.