Audio: Habs sign Hamrlik to four-year, $22-million contract

0-hamrlik.jpgRoman Hamrlik
Brings experience

Canadiens General Manager Bob Gainey announced today the signing of free agent defenceman Roman Hamrlik to a four-year contract (2007-08 to 2010-11). He’ll be paid $22 million over the four years.

According to an RDS report, Sheldon Souray turned down the same offer from the Canadiens. RDS reports that Souray is now studying offers from the New York Rangers, San Jose Sharks and Dallas Stars.

Here is the audio of Hamrlik’s conference call with Montreal media. He’s on the phone from the Czech Republic, hence the sometimes shaky quality.

Gainey is expected to meet the Montreal media tomorrow morning to discuss his pursuit of free agents.

From the team’s news release:

“Roman Hamrlik established himself as a solid NHL veteran. The acquisition of Roman fills a very important need in our organization. He is a strong defenceman with a powerful shot and excellent hockey skills. He brings to our club a solid experience and an excellent reputation,” said Bob Gainey.

A 14-season NHL veteran, Hamrlik, 33, played the last two seasons with the Calgary Flames who signed him as a free agent on August 14, 2005. Hamrlik who began his NHL career with the Tampa Bay Lightning back in 1992 also played with the Edmonton Oilers (1997-2000), the New York Islanders (2000-2004) and the Calgary Flames (2005-2007).

In his last five NHL seasons, Hamrlik played 350 games recording 171 points with a +/- plus 60.

Hamrlik, a 6-foot-2, 210-pound defenceman born in Zlin, Czech Republic, was the first overall selection in the 1992 NHL Entry Draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning. In his 14 NHL seasons, he played in 999 regular season games recording 505 points including 131 goals and a total of 1,129 penalty minutes.

A three-time NHL All-Star (2003, 1999, 1996) Hamrlik also played in 55 NHL playoff games recording 21 points. A mainstay on the Czech National Team, he represented his country on several occasions earning a gold medal at the 1998 Nagano Olympic Games.



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