Alexander Radulov only spent one season with the Montreal Canadiens, but he managed to leave a good impression for most of the fan base. But in the summer of 2017, Radulov decided to sign with the Dallas Stars instead of returning to Montreal. As we found out on Tuesday, the breakup with the Habs is still a sore subject.
After Radulov agreed to a five-year, $31.25 million deal in July 2017, Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin told the Montreal media that he offered the exact same deal to the Russian forward before the Stars countered with that same offer. Of course, the tax situation in Dallas is a lot more appealing than it is in Montreal, so he was going to net way more money by moving to Texas.
Clearly, Bergevin was trying to defend himself by showing fans that he was committed to bringing the veteran back.
“If you want loyalty, buy a dog,” Bergevin said at the time.
Something didn’t sit well with Radulov because he refused to talk to the Montreal media before and after Tuesday night’s game at Bell Centre. The fact that the fans booed him every time he touched the puck probably didn’t help improve his mood.
On one hand, you can understand why the Canadiens would have been frustrated at the time. After all, they gave Radulov an opportunity to come back to the NHL when most teams weren’t willing to. On the flip side, It’s hard to blame a player for trying to maximize the dollar amount on the biggest contract of his career.
These two teams will go head-to-head again in Dallas on Dec. 31.