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Gillett restructuring could include Canadiens sale @NHLdotcom

MONTREAL (AP) - The Montreal Canadiens could be for sale as part of a plan by owner George Gillett to sort out his varied holdings.

The American has retained financial firms in Canada, the United States and Europe to come up with a strategy to maximize the value of his corporate assets. The plan could include selling the Canadiens.

"We're not hiding it; we're going through a very difficult economic period," Boivin told La Presse.

"The Gillett family has retained the services of financial advisers to assess various strategic alternatives to optimize the value of its corporate assets," said Boivin in a statement on Monday. "In Canada, the family has retained the services of BMO Capital Markets and the process is under way."

Gillett owns 80.1 percent of the team and the Bell Centre.

He also owns 50 percent of English soccer giant Liverpool, and owns the Gillett Evernham NASCAR team, event promoter Gillett Entertainment Group, ski resorts, car dealerships and agricultural companies.

Gillett bought the Canadiens and their arena, then called the Molson Centre, in 2001, for $275 million with the help of $140 million in loans from two banks and the Quebec pension fund.

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