There will be a bit of a local flavour with the Bulldogs when the American Hockey League team opens its training camp on Saturday morning.
Milton native Jon Gleed is one of 12 players the parent Montreal Canadiens assigned to their Hamilton farm team on Thursday. The 6-2, 200 pound defenseman was Montreal’s seventh round (212th overall) selection in the 2004 National Hockey League draft. The right-handed shooting blueliner has played the past four seasons with Cornell University
A defensive defenceman, Gleed totaled five goals, 16 assists and 97 minutes in penalties 98 National Collegiate Athletic Association. Gleed, 22, played junior hockey with the Brampton Capitals of the Ontario Provincial Junior Hockey League.
In addition to Gleed, the Canadiens assigned goaltender Cedrick Desjardins, forwards Mathieu Aubin, Jimmy Bonneau, Matt D’Agostini, Michael Lambert, Francis Lemieux, Eric Manlow, Duncan Milroy, Gregory Stewart, Cory Urquhart and defenceman Andrew Archer.
The 20-year-old Desjardins (he celebrates his birthday exactly one week after training camp starts) appeared in 41 games for the Memorial Cup winning Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League last season, posting a 28-10 record with a 2.95 goals-against average, and a 0.906 save percentage. The native of Edmunston, New Brunswick was awarded the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy as the most valuable goaltender at the Memorial Cup tournament.
Aubin, who turned 20 years old on Sept. 18, had 103 points (47 goals, 53 assists) and 63 penalty minutes in 70 games to lead the Lewiston MAINEiacs (QMJHL) in scoring last season. The 6-2, 190-pound centre from Sorel, Que.,was a fifth round, 130th overall in the 2005 NHL draft.
Bonneau, a 21-year-old native of Baie-Comeau, Quebec, is here to win any Mr. Congeniality contest. The rugged 6-3, 220 pound winger had six points (one goal, five assists) and 137 penalty minutes in 65 games with the Long Beach Ice Dogs of the East Coast Hockey League last season. Drafted by the Canadiens in the eighth round (241st overall) he averaged 253 minutes in penalties in three season in the QMJHL.
The 19-year-old D’Agostini went in the sixth round when the Canadiens made him the 190th selection in 2005. The native of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., played 66 games for the Ontario Hockey League Guelph Storm last season and ranked second on the team with 79 points (25 goals, 54 assists).
Lambert, 22, skated in 39 contests with the Bulldogs in 2005-06, recording 17 points (10 goals, 7 assists) and 25 penalty minutes. The native of Trois Rivieres, Que., also played in 20 games for Long Beach where he had 18 points (11 goals, 7 assists) and 16 penalty minutes.
The 22-year-old Lemieux is another familiar face with the Bulldogs. The native of Sherbrooke, Que., skated in 67 games for Hamilton last season when he registered 41 points (18 goals, 23 assists) and 76 penalty minutes.
Also back in Hamilton is Milroy, a 23-year-old native of Edmonton, Alberta. He had 35 points (16 goals, 19 assists) and 63 penalty minutes in 77 games with the Bulldogs last season.
Manlow, a 31-year-old native of Belleville, Ont., joins the ‘Dogs from the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins. He was third on the Griffins with 73 points (25 goals, 48 assists) in 80 games. He signed a two-year AHL contract with Hamilton in July.
Stewart, a 20-year-old native of Kitchener, saw action in 60 games for the OHL’s Peterborough Petes, posting 39 points (24 goals, 15 assists) and 83 penalty minutes.
Urquhart, a native of Halifax, Nova Scotia, played two games for Hamilton last season, producing one assist and two penalty minutes. In 67 games with Long Beach, the 21-year-old collected 52 points (26 goals, 26 assists) and 42 penalty minutes.
Archer, a 23-year-old native of Calgary, was limited to 42 games with Hamilton in 2005-06 due to injuries and recorded three assists along with 62 penalty minutes.
The Bulldogs open their 11th training camp at the Dave Andreychuk Mountain Arena. Training camp will run to Thursday, Oct. 5 and all on-ice training camp sessions are open to the public.
Hamilton will play four exhibition games. The ‘Dogs open the pre-season on Wednesday, Sept. 27 at 7:30 p.m., when they travel to Oshawa to take on the Toronto Marlies at the Civic Centre. Hamilton’s second pre-season game will take place on Friday, Sept. 29 at 7:30 p.m., when they visit the Onondaga County War Memorial at Oncenter in Syracuse, New York, where they will play the Crunch. The team’s third exhibition game goes Saturday, Sept. 30 at 4 p.m., when they play the Marlies at the Southwood Arena at Woodstock’s Community Complex. The fourth, and final pre-season match-up is scheduled for Sunday, Oct 1 at 4 p.m. They’ll play the Syracuse Crunch at Niagara Falls (Ont.) Memorial Arena.
Hamilton opens the new season on Friday, Oct. 6 against their North Division rival, the Manitoba Moose, at Copps Coliseum.