The Canadiens signed defenceman Darren Dietz to a three year contract Sunday. Dietz, playing for the Saskatoon Blades of the WHL, leads all WHL defencemen with 24 goals and 58 points in 72 games. He is plus-9. The six-foot-one, 195-pound Dietz has 131 points in 220 career WHL games.
Dietz, a right hand shot, was selected 138th overall in the 2011 entry draft. Through the 2010-2011 drafts, seven of Scouting Director Trevor Timmins’ draft choices were defencemen, including his first round choice both years; Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu. Five of the seven are considered solid Candiens prospects.
The contract will take effect next season when Dietz will be reporting to the Hamilton Bulldogs.
The crop of seven defencemen drafted by Timmins in 2010 and 2011 are – in ’11, Jarred Tinordi and Morgan Ellis (both on Hamilton roster) and in 2011 Nathan Beaulieu (Hamilton), Josiah Didier (4th round-second year at U of Denver); Magnus Nygren (4th round-now with Swedish Elite League -Farjestad); Dietz (5th round-Saskatoon); Colin Sullivan (7th round-Boston College).
The News Release from Canadiens Communications -
MONTREAL – Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin announced Sunday the signing of defenseman Darren Dietz to a three-year contract (2013-14 to 2015-16). As per club policy, financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
In 72 games with the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades this season, Dietz has collected 58 points (24 goals, 34 assists). He ranks first among the league defensemen in goals, and third among WHL rearguards in points. He shows 100 penalty minutes and a +9 plus/minus differential.
Dietz, 19, has recorded 131 points (48 goals, 83 assists) in 220 games since his junior debut with Saskatoon in 2009-10. The 6’01’’ and 195 lbs defenseman has served 288 penalty minutes and displays a +29 plus/minus differential.
A native of Medicine Hat, Alberta, Dietz was selected in the fifth round, 138th overall by the Canadiens at the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. He took part in his first training camp with the Canadiens in September 2011.