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BRAMPTON, Ont. – The Brampton Battalion has acquired overage centre Francis Menard in a trade with the Peterborough Petes, the Ontario Hockey League club announced Tuesday.
The Battalion sent Peterborough a third-round pick in the 2014 OHL Priority Selection and a sixth-round choice in 2015.
“He’s going to come in as a top-six forward for us,” said Stan Butler, director of hockey operations and head coach. “We had an available overage spot, and he’ll come in and fill that.”
Menard, originally selected by the Guelph Storm in the sixth round of the 2008 OHL Priority Selection, has led the Petes in scoring this season with 15 goals and 18 assists for 33 points in 40 games.
“I’m obviously excited for the opportunity,” said Menard, a resident of Embrun, Ont. “There’s a good group of guys in the room, so it will be great to be a part of.”
Menard, a left shot who stands six feet and weighs 192 pounds, joins defenceman Cameron Wind and right winger Brendan Childerley as the Battalion’s overage contingent. Left winger Derek Froats was the team’s third overager but cleared waivers in November and is expected undergo surgery to repair tendons in a wrist.
“As an overage player I want to come in and provide leadership as we get closer to the playoffs,” said Menard. “I’m a guy who brings positive energy to the team. I want to help out by scoring but also on the defensive side of things too.”
Said Butler: “He was the top scorer on Peterborough this season, so we know he can help us offensively. He had 60 points for Guelph last year, too.”
Menard played three seasons with Guelph before a trade to Peterborough last June 8. In 239 OHL games, he has scored 57 goals and earned 82 assists for 139 points with 148 penalty minutes.
“He’s a solid two-way player,” said Butler. “He’s the kind of guy who can help us go far in the playoffs.”
In three postseason campaigns with Guelph, Menard had seven goals and six assists for 13 points in 17 games.
“You all of a sudden jump into a playoff race,” said Menard. “We’re in a good position to make the playoffs here, so I want to help wherever I can.”
Menard will be with the Battalion when it visits the Windsor Spitfires at 7:05 p.m. Thursday.
“I’m heading to Brampton tonight to start to get settled in. I’m excited to see everyone and get started.”