Canadiens sign Taormina, Froese

Photo: Scott Thomas

The Montreal Canadiens have agreed to terms on a two-year, two-way contract with free-agent defenseman Matt Taormina, and a two-year contract with free-agent forward Byron Froese.

Froese received a two-way contract for 2017-18 and a one-way contract for 2018-19.

Taormina, 30, spent the 2016-17 season with the Syracuse Crunch in the AHL, winning the Eddie Shore Award as the AHL’s outstanding defenseman and reaching the Calder Cup Finals.

Taormina registered 15 goals and 45 assists for 60 points in 70 regular-season games for the Crunch in 2016-17, and added five goals and 15 assists for 20 points in 22 postseason contests.

Over the course of his career, the Warren, Mich., native has suited up for 439 AHL games, totaling 70 goals and 190 assists for 260 points. Taormina has made two trips to the Finals (2013, 2017) and three appearances in the AHL All-Star Classic (2015, 2016, 2017). He has also played 59 NHL games with New Jersey and Tampa Bay.

Last season, the 26-year-old Froese played six games in the NHL ranks, the first two with the Toronto Maple Leafs and the last four with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Froese spent the majority of the season in the AHL, registering 46 points, including 27 goals, in 54 games between the Toronto Marlies and Syracuse Crunch. He added six goals and seven assists in 22 postseason games, helping Syracuse reach the Calder Cup Finals.

A fourth-round pick of the Chicago Blackhawks in 2009, Froese has played 62 games since making his NHL debut, scoring two goals and adding three assists for five points. In 201 AHL games with Syracuse, Toronto, San Antonio and Rockford, Froese has compiled 52 goals and 56 assists for 108 points.