-- The Toronto Maple Leafs made two late additions at the NHL trading deadline on Tuesday, acquiring forward Doug Gilmour from the Montreal Canadiens and defenceman Phil Housley from the Chicago Blackhawks.
Gilmour, a popular captain of the Leafs from 1992 to 1997, was reacquired from the rival Canadiens in exchange for a 6th round pick.
"It's a dream come true again," Gilmour told TSN. "Hopefully I can be a small piece of this puzzle.
"This is probably my last go at (a Stanley Cup)," he added. "I'm really excited about it."
The Blackhawks got Toronto's fourth- and ninth-round drafts picks for Housley.
|Gilmour's back for one last run at the Cup.|
Graig Abel Photography
The moves followed the Leafs acquisition of veteran defenceman Glen Wesley from Carolina on Sunday and right-winger Owen Nolan on March 6 from San Jose.
Gilmour and Housley are both 39 and entering the option years on their contracts. Between them, they have 2,967 games of NHL experience.
The Canadiens, unlikely to make the playoffs, were shopping Gilmour, but some teams balked at the generous playoff bonuses in his contract, which reportedly pay $50,000 US if his team gets past the first round and $100,000 for each round after that, with an additional $150,000 bonus for winning the Stanley Cup.
There is a club option at $3 million on Gilmour for next season and the team has to pay him $500,000 if they elect not to pick up the option.
"We're just five points out of the playoffs here in Montreal," said Gilmour. "If I wasn't going to go to a specific place with a good shot at the Stanley Cup, I wanted to stay in Montreal and help them make a run at the playoffs.
Housley is earning $2.5 million this season with a team option at $2 million for 2003-04.
Gilmour, who has 11 goals and 19 assists in 61 games this season, passed Dale Hawerchuk this season for 13th place on the NHL's all-time scoring list. He currently has 1,414 career points.
Gilmour's NHL career began in 1983 with the St. Louis Blues. He moved to Calgary for the 1988-89 season and helped the Flames win a Stanley Cup that season. He moved to Toronto in a blockbuster deal in 1992.
The Kingston, Ont., native later played in New Jersey, Chicago and Buffalo and signed as an unrestricted free agent with Montreal on Oct. 5, 2001.
"(Leafs coach and GM Pat Quinn) said I'd come in and play 10 to 14 minutes a game," said Gilmour. "It's a great hockey club, hopefully we can put it all together."
Housley is fifth all-time in scoring by NHL defencemen with 1,232 points.
The St. Paul, Minnesota native's career began in 1982 with Buffalo. He moved to Winnipeg in 1990,then to Calgary, New Jersey, Washington and Calgary again before he was claimed off waivers by Chicago on Sept. 28, 2001.