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Bruins Announce Seven Transactions On July 1

by Boston Bruins @NHLBruins / Boston Bruins

BOSTON - Boston Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney announced today, July 1, that the Bruins have signed the following unrestricted free agents: signed forward Par Lindholm to a two-year NHL contract with an annual cap hit of $850,000; signed forward Brett Ritchie to a one-year NHL contract with a cap hit of $1 million; signed forward Brendan Gaunce to a one-year, two-way contract with a NHL cap hit of $700,000; signed goaltender Maxime Lagace to a one-year, two-way contract with an NHL cap hit of $700,000; signed Josiah Didier to a one-year AHL contract.

Sweeney also announced that the team has signed the following restricted free agents: signed defenseman Connor Clifton to a three-year contract extension through the 2022-23 season with an annual NHL cap hit of $1 million; signed forward Ryan Fitzgerald to a one-year, two-way contract with an NHL cap hit of $700,000.

Lindholm, 27, spent his first season in the NHL in 2018-19 with the Winnipeg Jets and Toronto Maple Leafs, recording one goal and 12 assists for 13 points in 65 regular season games between the clubs.

Prior to signing with Toronto, the 6-foot, 183-pound forward played four seasons (2014-18) with Skelleftea AIK in the Swedish Hockey League. He enjoyed a career-best season in 2017-18 when he tallied 18 goals and 29 assists for 47 points in 49 games. Over his four-year career in the Swedish Hockey League, Lindholm skated in 196 games, totaling 53 goals and 66 assists for 119 points. The Kusmark, Sweden native was also selected to play for Team Sweden at the 2018 Olympic Games, scoring one goal in four games on the international stage.

Ritchie, 26, has spent the last seven seasons in the Dallas Stars organization. The 6-foot-4, 220-pound forward scored four goals and two assists for six points with 57 penalty minutes in 53 NHL games with Dallas in 2018-19. He enjoyed his best offensive season with the club in 2016-17 when he posted 16 goals and eight assists for 24 points with 38 penalty minutes and a plus-11 rating in 78 games. Over his five-year NHL career with Dallas, Ritchie totaled 33 goals and 21 assists for 54 points with 156 penalty minutes in 241 games. He also added 53 goals and 48 assists for 101 points with 119 penalty minutes in 141 career AHL games with the Texas Stars.

The Orangeville, Ontario native was originally selected by Dallas in the second round (44th overall) of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

Gaunce has spent the past four seasons playing between the Vancouver Canucks and their AHL affiliate Utica Comets. This season, the 25-year-old scored 16 goals and tallied 22 assists for 38 points in 60 games with the Comets, matching his career-high 38 points (17g, 21a) in 46 games with the Comets in 2015-16. In 117 career NHL games with Vancouver, Gaunce has tallied six goals and nine assists for 15 points.

The 6-foot-2, 216-pound forward played four seasons in the OHL prior to signing with the Canucks. He captained the Belleville Bulls from 2012-2014, with his most productive season coming in 2013-14 between the Bulls and Erie Otters, when he posted 31 goals and 41 assists for 72 points in 65 games.

The Sudbury, Ontario native was originally selected by the Vancouver Canucks in the first round (26th overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

 Lagacé, 26, has played for the Vegas Golden Knights and its AHL affiliate Chicago Wolves since signing with Vegas as a free agent in 2017. He started 33 games in net for the Chicago Wolves (AHL) this season, posting a career-best 2.43 goals against average and .914 save percentage. Prior to joining the Golden Knights, the 6-foot-2, 190-pound goaltender played three seasons for the Texas Stars (AHL), with minutes in the ECHL as well. 

The Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures, Quebec native originally signed an entry-level contract with the Dallas Stars on July 23, 2012 as a free agent.

Didier, 26, spent the last two seasons with the Charlotte Checkers, recording two goals and eight assists for 10 points and a plus-10 rating in 41 games in 2018-19. In five seasons in the AHL, the 6-foot-3, 207-pound defenseman tallied eight goals and 25 assists for 33 points in 195 games. In the ECHL, he produced four goals and five assists for nine points in 17 games from 2015-18.

Prior to joining the AHL, the defenseman played for the University of Denver, where he served as alternate captain his last two seasons. In 148 games, Didier scored four goals and tallied 25 assists for 29 points with a plus-20 rating.

The Littleton, Colorado native was originally selected by Montreal in the fourth round (97th overall) in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

Clifton, 24, saw his first NHL action with the Bruins in 2018-19, tallying one assist in 19 regular season games and adding two goals and three assists for five points in 18 postseason games. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound blueliner also chipped in six goals and 21 assists for 27 points with a plus-13 rating in 53 AHL appearances with Providence.

He played in 54 games with Providence in 2017-18, tallying four goals and nine assists for 13 points with 35 penalty minutes and a plus-11 rating. The rookie defenseman ranked fifth on the team in plus/minus and third among the team's defensemen in scoring.

Prior to signing with Providence, Clifton played four seasons of collegiate hockey at Quinnipiac University from 2013-17. He served as the team's captain as a senior in 2016-17, totaling seven goals and seven assists for 14 points with 82 penalty minutes. He established career highs in all offensive categories as a junior in 2015-16, recording seven goals and 21 assists for 28 points with a plus-20 rating. In his four-year career, Clifton appeared in 156 NCAA games, posting 19 goals and 37 assists for 56 points with 284 penalty minutes and a plus-39 rating.

The Matawan, New Jersey native was originally selected by the Arizona Coyotes in the fifth round (133th overall) of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.

Fitzgerald, 24, has spent the past three seasons with the Providence Bruins, accumulating 30 goals and 46 assists for 76 points in 134 games. He was named to the 2019 AHL All-Star Classic.

Prior to joining Providence, the 5-foot-9, 172-pound forward played four years with the Boston College Eagles, recording 66 goals and 66 assists for 132 points in 152 games. He was served as an alternate captain his senior year and was named to NCAA East Second All-American Team and Hockey East First All-Star Team in 2016.

The North Reading, Massachusetts native was originally selected by Boston in the fourth round (120th overall) of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.

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