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Canadiens acquire defenseman Janne Niinimaa

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens
In return for forward Mike Ribeiro


MONTREAL  - Canadiens GM Bob Gainey announced Saturday the acquisition of defenseman Janne Niinimaa and a fifth round pick in 2007 from the Dallas Stars, in return for forward Mike Ribeiro and a sixth round pick in 2008.

Niinimaa, 31, will be playing in his 10th season in the National Hockey League. In 700 career regular season games, the 6-foot-1, 220-pound defenseman scored 54 goals and added 262 assists for a total of 316 points. He registered 697 penalty minutes and posted a plus/minus rating of plus-56. In the playoffs, Niinimaa took part in 59 games, collecting 24 points, including three goals, and 60 penalty minutes.

Niinimaa, a native of Raahe, Finland, started the 2005-06 season with the New York Islanders, where he recorded 10 points, including one goal, and 62 penalty minutes in 41 games. On January 10, 2006, he was traded to the Dallas Stars, along with a fifth round pick in 2007, in return for John Erskine and a second round pick in 2006. With the Stars, he registered six points, including two goals, and 24 penalty minutes in 22 games.

Selected in the second round (36th overall) by the Philadelphia Flyers in 1993, Niinimaa played for the Flyers from 1996 through 1998. During his first season with the Flyers, he had a career-high 40 assists. On March 24, 1998, he was traded to the Edmonton Oilers for Dan McGillis and a second round pick in 1998. With the Oilers, he had career-best 46 points and 12 goals in 82 games.

Mike Ribeiro played 276 games with the Canadiens, from 1999 through 2006, collecting 153 points, including 50 goals, and 92 penalty minutes.


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