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Montreal Canadiens Cut 11 Players

October 1, 2003

MONTREAL (AP) _ The Montreal Canadiens assigned 11 players, including veteran defensemen Karl Dykhuis and Patrick Taverse, to Hamilton of the AHL on Wednesday.

Others sent down were goaltenders Jean-Francois Damphousse and Eric Fichaud, defenseman Francois Beauchemin and forwards Alexander Perezhogin, Sylvain Blouin, Benjamin Carpentier, Pierre Dagenais, Jonathan Ferland and Benoit Gratton.

Dykhuis and Traverse were also left unprotected for Friday’s NHL waiver draft. Dykhuis is to earn $1.6 million this season and Traverse $950,000.

``We decided to keep what we felt were our eight best defensemen, at least for now,″ coach Claude Julien said. ``We want to send a clear message that we’ll keep the players here who deserve it.

``If we want to win, we have to keep our best regardless of their contracts.″

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