Habs send defenceman Ryan O’Byrne to Avs for forward Michael Bournival

MONTREAL – The Montreal Canadiens traded defenceman Ryan O’Byrne to the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday in exchange for forward Michael Bournival.

O’Byrne, 26, did not record a point in three games with the Canadiens this season. In 128 career regular-season games with Montreal, O’Byrne had 16 points (two goals, 14 assists) and 181 penalty minutes.

The six-foot-five, 234-pound blue-liner was Montreal’s third-round pick (No. 79 overall) in the 2003 NHL draft.

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O’Byrne is set to become a restricted free agent this summer. The deal trims US$1.4 million from Montreal’s payroll.

Bournival, 18, leads the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Shawinigan Cataractes with 24 points (10-14) in 17 games this season.

He was selected by the Avalanche in the third round (No. 71 overall) of this year’s draft.