Audio: Price signs for 2 years

Carey Price signs his first Canadiens contract in April 2007 in the Pasco, Wash., home of Dennis and Jill Williams, his Tri-Cities billet for four seasons, before leaving for the Hamilton Bulldogs.
Courtesy Williams family

AUDIO: Price conference call

The Canadiens have signed goaltender Carey Price to a two-year contract.

No official word on terms of the deal. The figures being mentioned on Twitter range from $5.25 million ($2.5 million and $2.75 million) to $2.65 million per to $5.5 million ($2.5 million and the $3 million Price was prepared to go on strike to get, as per our national public broadcaster).

A cap hit of $2.75 million would leave the Canadiens with 21 players under contract and about $2 million worth of breathing room.

Price is in Kelowna, where he’s spent most of the summer and is working with goaltending coach Pierre Groulx at the junior Rockets rink. After the conference call, he planned to drive to Tri-Cities where “my girlfriend has a family reunion I’ve got to go to”, Price said, stressing the obligatory nature of the excursion.

Sounding poised, relaxed and confident, Price began by saying he does not feel an undue degree of pressure, beyond the challenge of wanting to do well for his teammates.

“I learned ice time isn’t just given to you, it’s earned,” Price said, in response to a question from Dave Stubbs about the goaltender’s late-season difficulties.

Price also said a two-year contract is ideal at his age and stage of development.

Price has been working with his personal coach, Eli Wilson, and says he’s in good shape. He has wrapped up his rodeo riding and plans to be in Montreal Sept. 10.

Asked how many games he’d like to start this season, Price answered “82″ before getting serious and telling Pat Hickey that the goaltending workload will be a coach’s decision, based on merit. 

In response to a question about whether his off-season training has stressed lateral movement and his glove hand, Price said he’s worked to improve all aspects of his game.

Admitting 2009-’10 had been difficult for him, Price said he’d strayed further from his game as the season progressed. Asked to describe his experience in Montreal to date, Price said: “It’s been hard and it’s been awesome.”

From the team’s press release:

MONTREAL  – Montreal Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier announced today
the signing of goaltender Carey Price to a two-year contract (2010-11 and
2011-12). As per Club policy, financial terms of the agreement were not
disclosed.

“We are extremely happy that Carey has
agreed to pursue his career with the Canadiens. Carey is a key member of our
Club. He has proven that he has what it takes to be a good goaltender in the
league, and we are confident he will perform to the best of his abilities for
years to come in a Canadiens uniform”, said Canadiens general manager Pierre
Gauthier.

Price, 22, completed in 2009-10 his third season with the
Canadiens. The goaltender displayed a 13 wins, 20 losses and five overtime
losses record in 41 games. He also registered a 2.77 goals against average and a
.912 save percentage. Price was named the NHL Second Star of the Week for the
period ending on November 22 and was also the recipient of the Molson Cup for
the months of October and November.

Since 2007-08, Price has amassed 60
wins, including four shutouts, in 134 NHL regular-season games. The 6-03,
219-pound goaltender has also maintained a 2.73 goals against average and a .912
save percentage. He also played 15 career playoff games.

In 2008-09,
Price was named to the NHL All-Star Game starting lineup. The previous season
(2007-08), he became the first goaltender in the NHL aged 20 or less to win 20
games in a season since 1985-86. In 2006-07, he became the first player in
hockey history to be named Canadian Hockey League Goaltender of the Year, World
Junior Championship Tournament MVP (Gold medal with Team Canada) and win the AHL
Playoff Most Valuable Player Trophy (Calder Cup with the Hamilton Bulldogs) all
in the same year.

A native of Williams Lake, BC, Price was selected in
the first round, fifth overall by the Canadiens at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.

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