North Stars Trade Bellows to Canadiens

From Staff and Wire Reports

In his first major move as general manager of the Minnesota North Stars, Bob Gainey traded left winger Brian Bellows, the team’s all-time leading goal-scorer, Monday. Bellows, who turned 28 today, was sent to the Montreal Canadiens for right winger Russ Courtnall, 27.

The deal ended a 10-year career in Minnesota for Bellows, who scored 342 goals but regularly sparred with coaches who wanted to make him a better rounded player. The latest was Gainey, who arrived in 1990 and took over the role of coach-general manager this off-season when Bob Clarke resigned.

Minnesota has had a winning record in only one of the last eight seasons. Bellows scored 30 goals and a team-high 45 assists in 1991-92. It was his seventh season of 30-plus goals, but it was accompanied by a minus-20--meaning opponents scored 20 more even-strength goals when he was on the ice than the North Stars did.

The 5-foot-11, 183-pound Courtnall was the seventh player drafted in 1983 but has never had a 30-goal season. He had 26 goals and 50 assists in his personal-best 1990-91 season but only seven goals and 14 assists in 27 games last season, when he was hampered by injuries.