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Cale Fleury Three Year Entry Level Contract

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MONTREAL - Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin announced on Thursday that the team has agreed to terms on a three-year, entry-level contract (2018-19 to 2020-21) with defenseman Cale Fleury.

The 6'01'' and 203 lbs rearguard recorded 51 points (12 goals, 39 assists) in 68 games with the WHL's Kootenay Ice and Regina Pats.

Fleury, 19, ranked first among Pats defensemen with a combined total of 51 points. He added four points (0-4-4) in seven playoff games with the Pats. He helped Regina reach the Memorial Cup tournament, with the Pats dropping a 3-0 decision in the Finals against Acadie-Bathurst.

Selected in the third round, 87th overall at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, Fleury played 269 career games in the WHL with Kootenay (2014-15 to 2017-18) and Regina (2017-18). Fleury, a Calgary native who captained the Ice in his last two seasons with the team, ended his Junior career with 32 goals and 95 assists for 127 points and served 178 penalty minutes. He added five points, all assists, in seven playoff games with both WHL teams.

Fleury currently plays with the Laval Rocket, the Canadiens' AHL affiliate.

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A lot of people feel the D has really taken a back seat in terms of drafting compared to MB's new fascination with stock-piling centers. And if you look at recent drafts, that's true. We simply don't have a deep pipeline of D prospects. You have Mete and Juulsen with the team already, and now maybe Reilly emerging as a guy who could be here for a few years. But after that, a lot of the guys we drafted 3-7 years ago have been busts. Beaulieu is gone, Dietz is gone, Sergachev is gone, Thrower was promising but never panned out, Lernout doesn't look like he'll amount to much, and so on. So really, the only prospects who might still pan out are

- Fleury, Brook, Walford, and Tyszka from the 2017 draft

- Romanov and Harris from the 2018 draft

Brook looked pretty good in camp, and Fleury has now been signed, but both guys are also righties, with Weber, Petry, and Juulsen ahead of them for now. Those other 4 guys are lefties but they project as more of projects than anything right now. So from where we are, I would still look at Weber and Petry as being potential trade bait to bring in younger D men. The team would have to gauge how far along Brook and Fleury are to know when the right time to make sure a move might be.

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