Laraque, Denis return home, sign with Canadiens Staff

7/3/2008 5:41:50 PM

The Montreal Canadiens added a pair of hometown boys Thursday.

Georges Laraque, a native of Montreal, has signed a three-year contract with the Canadiens, worth $4.5 million. The deal includes a partial no-trade clause.

"A 10-year veteran, Georges is the kind of player who made his mark in the NHL," Habs GM Bob Gainey said in a statement. "With his physical play and determination, we are convinced that he will add valuable energy to our group of players."

In a conference call on Thursday, Laraque admitted he noticed while playing the Canadiens last season that they needed some toughness.

"I elbowed Francis Bouillon and no one did anything about it," he explained. "When you're a heavyweight and you play a team that doesn't have one, you can run around."

Laraque spent last season with the Pittsburgh Penguins, where he tallied 13 points and 141 penalty minutes in 71 games.

Orginally an Edmonton Oilers draft pick in 1995, Laraque has spent time with the Penguins and the Phoenix Coyotes.

Montreal also announced the signing of goaltender Marc Denis to a one-year, two-way contract. Denis was recently bought out by the Tampa Bay Lightning after playing just 10 games in 2007-08.