"This is a new chapter in my life that I feel mutually, myself and the (Canadiens) organization, were ready for," the Vegas Golden Knights forward told reporters, including NHL.com's Nick Cotsonika, at his introductory press conference Wednesday. "I think they're going in a direction of a little bit of a rebuild or a reset, and I'm ready to move on."
The Canadiens traded Pacioretty to the Golden Knights early Monday morning for forward Tomas Tatar, prospect Nick Suzuki, and a 2019 second-round pick. It ended a year-long saga in which he was frequently in the rumor mill and reportedly nearly dealt to other teams multiple times.
After the trade, Montreal general manager Marc Bergevin said Pacioretty asked for a trade on more than one occasion last season, but as he and his agent, Allan Walsh, have done before, the 29-year-old winger attempted to clarify that Wednesday.
Pacioretty said he was grateful for the honor of serving as Canadiens captain but he thinks the deal sending him to the Golden Knights could help his play.
The 10-year veteran had one of the worst seasons of his career in 2017-18, managing only 17 goals and 37 points after five straight non-lockout campaigns of at least 30 goals and 60 points.
He was Montreal's captain for three seasons beginning in 2015-16.