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Habs preparing to part ways with Gomez

BROSSARD, Quebec (AP) - The Montreal Canadiens have sent Scott Gomez home for the season.

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General manager Marc Bergevin said at the opening of training camp that he will buy out the center's contract next summer to remove his team-high $7.3 million salary cap hit from the books. Under the new collective bargaining agreement signed Saturday, the cap is to plunge by about $10 million next season, but teams will be allowed two ``amnesty'' buyouts to help reach the cap.

However, if a player is injured, he cannot be bought out. Bergevin said it was safest for the team that Gomez not play this season.

``I have nothing against Scott Gomez,'' he said. ``It was the best thing for the future of the team.''

Gomez has been a disappointment on the ice the last two seasons. Last season, the 33-year-old was limited to 38 games by injuries and had two goals and nine assists.

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