MONTREAL - The Montreal Canadiens' season may be done, but six of their players will keep on.
Montreal returned Louis Leblanc, Blake Geoffrion, Robert Mayer, Gabriel Dumont, Frederic St-Denis and Aaron Palushaj to the American Hockey League's Hamilton Bulldogs on Saturday following the conclusion of the NHL's regular season.
Hamilton released Brandon Maxwell, Trevor Hendrikx, Jesse Todd, Travis Novak and Ryan Flanigan from their respective try-out contracts to make space for the incoming Canadiens players.
Montreal's season officially ended after its 4-1 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday. The Bulldogs have four more regular-season games but likely won't make the AHL's post-season.
Leblanc, 20, has played in 27 games for Hamilton this season, scoring nine goals and 10 assists. The six-foot, 184-pound forward has played 42 games with the Canadiens this season. He had five goals and five assists with Montreal.
Geoffrion played 35 games with the Canadiens this season, with two goals and three assists. The six-foot, 190-pound left-winger played five games for Hamilton since being acquired by Montreal on Feb. 17. He had two goals and six assists in those five games.
Mayer played in 35 games with Hamilton this season compiling a record of 12-16-1 with a 3.02 goals-against average and a .906 save percentage.
Dumont played three games with the Habs this season. The five-foot-10, 181-pound centre has played 55 games with the Bulldogs this season, scoring 13 goals and adding nine assists.
St-Denis has played in 54 games for Hamilton this season, with three goals and 25 assists. The 5-foot-11, 182-pound defenceman played 17 games with the Canadiens, with a goal and two assists.
Palushaj played in 38 games for Montreal this season. The 5-foot-11, 187-pound forward scored a goal and added four assists. Palushaj has suited up for 31 games with the Bulldogs this season. He had 13 goals and 18 assists in that span.