Canadiens sign newly acquired Max Domi to 2-year deal
Montreal received feisty forward from Coyotes for Alex Galchenyuk on Friday
Armed with a new two-year contract and prepared for a change of scenery, forward Max Domi said Saturday that he can't wait to get started with the Montreal Canadiens.
The Habs acquired Domi from the Arizona Coyotes on Friday in exchange for fellow young forward Alex Galchenyuk.
"I think everything happens for a reason," Domi said on a conference call. "Hopefully both of us can succeed in our new homes."
Domi, 23, was Arizona's first-round pick (12th overall) at the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. His deal has an average annual value of $3.15 million US, the Canadiens said in a release.
Last season, the 23-year-old Winnipeg native had nine goals and 36 assists in 82 games. He registered a career-high 52 points with 18 goals in his rookie year.
Domi said he was aware of recent trade rumours that he could be on his way out of the desert, but was still a little surprised to be dealt.
"I'm really excited to start the new chapter," he said from New York. "Of course I was a little bit shocked. But it's a lot of emotion, some sadness, and mostly excitement and goodness. So I can't wait to get started. I'm absolutely pumped."
Thank you <a href="https://twitter.com/ArizonaCoyotes?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ArizonaCoyotes</a> for the past three seasons. Memories and friends that I will carry with me for the rest of my life <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ThankYouAZ?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#ThankYouAZ</a> 🌵—@max_domi
In 222 career NHL games, Domi has 36 goals and 135 assists.
Domi optimistic for next season
The 24-year-old Galchenyuk, meanwhile, had spent his entire six-year NHL career with the Canadiens. He was selected third overall in the 2012 draft.
Galchenyuk, who has 108 goals and 255 points in 418 games, signed a $14.7-million, three-year contract last July with an annual salary cap hit of $4.9 million.
Montreal and Arizona are both coming off down seasons. The Canadiens were third-last in the Eastern Conference standings with 71 points while the Coyotes were last in the West with 70 points.
Domi was still quite optimistic about the Canadiens' future.
"Montreal has an unbelievable hockey team right now," Domi said. "A combination of an unbelievable group of veteran leadership, some great young players and ultimately the best goalie in the league.
"It's a great mix and I'm just going to try and slide in and do my part in helping this team win in any way I possibly can."