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May 26, 2024

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Habs’ Byron will retire after 12-season career

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Forward Paul Byron is set to retire ahead of the 2023-24 season, as confirmed by Montreal Canadiens’ General Manager Kent Hughes on Tuesday, as reported by Richard Labbe of La Presse.

Having been sidelined due to a hip injury during the previous season, the 34-year-old Byron’s four-year, $13.6 million contract, which was signed in September 2018, came to an end this summer.

Hughes further indicated that he plans to meet with Byron in September to discuss a potential role within the organization, as shared by Labbe.

Byron’s journey began when he was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the sixth round of the 2007 draft. He saw action in eight games for the Sabres during the 2010-11 season before being traded to the Calgary Flames.

During his time with the Flames, Byron played in 130 games spread across parts of four seasons. Following his waiver claim by the Montreal Canadiens in October 2015, he spent the remainder of his career with the Canadiens.

Notably, Byron achieved consecutive 20-goal seasons with Montreal in 2016-17 and 2017-18, during which he recorded his career-highs with 22 goals and 43 points in the 2016-17 season.

From 2018 to 2022, Byron held the role of alternate captain for the Canadiens. However, injuries hampered his availability as he missed 133 games within that period, culminating in his absence for the entire 2022-23 season.

In postseason play, Byron contributed significantly with five goals and 11 points in 38 playoff games with the Canadiens. His notable contribution came during Montreal’s run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2021, where he participated in all 22 games of the journey.

Over the course of his regular season career with the Canadiens, Byron amassed 81 goals and 160 points in 383 games. His overall career statistics encompassed 98 goals and 208 points over 521 games.

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