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Habs sign Henry, Desjardins

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens

MONTREAL -- Canadiens GM Bob Gainey announced Thursday the signing of free agent defenseman Alex Henry to a one-year contract (2008-09). The Club also announced that goaltender Cédrick Desjardins has agreed to a two-year contract. As per club policy, financial terms of the agreements were not disclosed.

Henry, 28, suited up for the Milwaukee Admirals in the American Hockey League last season. He recorded 16 points (three goals, 13 assists) and was second on the team with 142 penalty minutes. He was one of only two defensemen to play in all 80 regular season games.

A native of Elliot Lake, Ontario, Henry spent the past two seasons in the Nashville Predators’ organization after signing as a free agent on August 21, 2006. The 6-foot-5, 220-pound defenseman played 175 NHL games with Edmonton (3), Washington (38) and Minnesota (134).

A third round selection, 67th overall, by the Edmonton Oilers in 1998, Henry was claimed twice on waivers during his NHL career, in October 2002 by the Washington Capitals and in October 2003 by the Minnesota Wild. Henry also played in 332 AHL games, including three seasons with the Hamilton Bulldogs from 1999 to 2002.

Cédrick Desjardins, 22, had a tremendous season in 2007-08 - his second as a professional  - as he led the ECHL Cincinnati Cyclones to the Kelly Cup. The Cyclones also won the league’s regular season title with a 115-point campaign. Desjardins posted a 16-4-2 record, had five shutouts, maintained a 1.92 goals-against average and a .934 save percentage in only 22 games. He led all ECHL goaltenders during the playoffs with a 1.84 goals-against average, posting an 11-4 record and a .939 save percentage in 16 games. Desjardins also played 12 games with the AHL's Hamilton Bulldogs last season (4-4-1, 3.04 GAA and .909 save percentage).

A native of Edmunston, New Brunswick, Desjardins spent four years in the QMJHL from 2002 to 2006 with Rimouski and Québec, posting 67 wins in 128 regular season games. In his second consecutive appearance in the Memorial Cup in 2006, he led the Remparts to the tournament championship. He was named the Memorial Cup Top Goaltender and was also named to the tournament’s All-Star Team.

This fall, Desjardins will participate in his second training camp with the Canadiens.

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