The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed free agent goaltender Mathieu Garon (gah-ROHN, MA-tyew) to a two-year contract today, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Garon, 6-foot-1, 206 pounds, played in 36 games with the Columbus Blue Jackets last season, posting a 10-14-6 record with a 2.72 goals-against average and a .901 save percentage. He also recorded three shutouts. Garon led the Blue Jackets in goals-against average and was tied for the lead in save-percentage and shutouts. His three shutouts were the second-highest of his career.
A native of Chandler, Quebec, Garon has appeared in 275 NHL games with the Blue Jackets, Pittsburgh Penguins, Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings and Montreal Canadiens. He has posted a 116-106-25 career record with a .904 save percentage and 2.82 goals against average. Garon has posted double-digit wins in each of the previous two seasons with a save percentage above .900 as well as a goals-against average below 3.00 in each of the previous three. He has played in two Stanley Cup Playoff games, both in relief roles.
Garon, 33, has played in 246 career AHL games with Fredericton, Quebec, Hamilton and Manchester, posting a 117-94-24 record. He was named to the AHL All-Star Classic on two occasions, both in 2004-05 with Manchester and again in 2000-01 with Quebec. He played junior hockey with Victoriaville of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League from 1995-98, appearing in 151 games. In 1997-98 he was named the Canadian Major Junior Goaltender of the Year, to the CHL First All-Star Team and a First-Team QMJHL All-Star.
He was drafted by Montreal in the second round, 44th overall, of the 1996 NHL Entry Draft.