UMass-Lowell defenseman Ron Hainsey, who just completed his sophomore season, has signed a three-year contract with the Montreal Canadiens and will be assigned to their AHL affiliate in Quebec.
Hainsey, who was taken by Montreal as the 13th overall pick in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft, was second on the River Hawks with 36 points this season, on 10 goals and 26 assists in 33 games, and was named to the all-Hockey East First Team. As a freshman, Hainsey had 11 points in 30 games.
“Ron Hainsey had an excellent season with the UMass-Lowell hockey team and was one of the top defensemen in the NCAA,” said Canadiens general manager Andre Savard. “We look forward to seeing him play at the professional level. He has very good offensive skills and is an excellent skater who reads the play very well.”
The 6-foot-2-inch, 196-pound Hainsey just turned 20 years old. The native of Bolton, Conn., previously played in the U.S. National Team Developmental Program in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Last December, Hainsey played in the World Junior Championship in Moscow for the second straight year. He registered five points in seven games for Team USA and ranked second among tournament assist leaders.
Hainsey is expected to report to Quebec immediately, and be available for Friday’s game against Worcester in Quebec City.