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Gorges still can’t explain falling out of favor in Montreal

Jul 25, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

joshgorgesgetty Getty Images

To hear him tell it, Josh Gorges has yet to hear a legit reason why the Canadiens traded him away.

“I wish I had a really good answer — where this came from and why, and how it came about — but I don’t, to be honest,” Gorges told the Kelowna Courier, just weeks after getting dealt to Buffalo. “It was a shock to me.”

Gorges, 29, was at the center of a whirlwind scenario near the end of June, when his name popped up — seemingly out out of nowhere — in a flurry of trade rumors. His name first surfaced on the eve of free agency when reports revealed he’d been dangled by Montreal in a proposed move to Toronto, only for Gorges to reject the move as part of his no-trade clause.

Eventually, he accepted a deal to Buffalo.

Deeply disappointed” by what transpired, Gorges — signed through 2017-18 for a cap hit of $3.9 million — said he “never wanted to leave Montreal,” adding “in no way has this been my decision.”

But it’s that cap number that could’ve played him out of town. Signed by ex-GM Pierre Gauthier, Gorges (and his contract) were inherited by current GM Marc Bergevin, who’s currently in the midst of a dicey financial summer — yesterday, he avoided arbitration with RFA Lars Eller by inking the forward to a four-year, $14 million deal; now, Bergevin must sort out negotiations with franchise defenseman P.K. Subban, which will undoubtedly be pricey.

By shedding Gorges’ cap hit, Bergevin also freed up money for the future. Next year, young forwards Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher are RFAs, as are promising defensemen Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu.

But either that message wasn’t relayed to Gorges, or he wasn’t buying it.

“Not really,” Gorges said when asked if he got a satisfactory explanation for what transpired. “To be honest, I don’t need one or want one. It doesn’t do me any good, it doesn’t do my family any good.

“The thing for us is to look ahead, look to the future and what’s in front of us.”

  1. norskhelgen - Jul 25, 2014 at 2:06 PM

    My guess would be for more money to contribute to signing Subban and an internal budget. Why wouldn’t they trade the guy while he’s worth something? It also gives a young guy like Tinordi a legitimate shot at filling a roster spot at training camp.

  2. phtjoey - Jul 25, 2014 at 2:14 PM

    The article sums it up well…. he was signed by the previous GM (another mistake by Gauthier) for too much money, and doesn’t fit in the long term plans of the team. Now it’s time to move on.

  3. ribs108 - Jul 25, 2014 at 2:31 PM

    He should make the most of it – i.e. be happy to be gone from such an ignorant fan base that think they are somehow owed a Stanley Cup just for leading the sport in championships – the last being over 20 years ago. By rejecting Toronto, he just showed how uncompetitive he is. Not to go to a destination because you still love the team that just let you walk – where’s his competitive fire? He was one of the only Habs players I liked, but not anymore. Is he not going to check his former teammates when he plays them? His loyalty should now be elsewhere, but he’s still in Montreal in his heart – how sweet. BTW, Bergevin is no better than the Gainey/Gauthier entity. He just let 2 leaders leave. I guess we’ll see how it affects this already weak-willed and poorly-coached team on the ice. Enjoy Buffalo, Mr No-Compete!!

    • bigblueapple - Jul 25, 2014 at 3:11 PM

      Inbred bozo alert.

    • 19to77 - Jul 25, 2014 at 6:08 PM

      So tell me more about the last time the Leafs made the conference finals. Or, hell, the second round.

  4. mc321984 - Jul 25, 2014 at 3:12 PM

    Uncompetitive? Like Toronto has faired so much better than Buffalo?

    • tdrusher225 - Jul 26, 2014 at 11:40 AM

      I get what you’re saying but in fairness, Toronto did make the playoffs a year ago and was much closer to it this year than Buffalo was. If you asked yourself which team has a better chance of making the playoffs this year? I’d be surprised that answer wasn’t Toronto. Then again, it’s a lot like calling yourself the tallest midget because at the end of the day neither team is all that good.

  5. bsaures - Jul 25, 2014 at 3:23 PM

    The reason he was traded makes a lot of sense when you look long term. Montreal has atleast 3 dmen right now who are nhl ready (bealieu, tinordi, and pateryn). Chances are within 2 years atleast 1 maybe more would be top 4 material. In two years they would still have pk, emelin markov, and gorges. 1 of those players with those contracts would have to come out and at that point gorges is 31and has spent 2 more hard seasons likely receiving more injuries because of his style of play. That at 3.9 would not be easy to trade. Also to consider of the players above pk is the only righty so hence the gilbert signing. Essentially bergevin fixed a problem that was going to occur a few years ahead before it happened

  6. nyrnashty - Jul 25, 2014 at 3:35 PM

    It’s obvious that it’s due to money, it’s all about being able to flip players in the cap era.

  7. skr213 - Jul 25, 2014 at 6:59 PM

    Wait, Montreal took a dump on one of its own? Shocking.

  8. djshnooks - Jul 26, 2014 at 1:04 AM

    Mr. “No-compete?”

    You must not watch the guy. All Tim Murray and Ted Nolan talk about is “compete-level.” That’s all they care about right now because they want the young prospects looking up to guys who work hard on and off the ice. This is why McBain is gone.

    If Josh Gorges didn’t compete 100%, there is zero chance Tim Murray makes that trade…none…absolutely zero chance…especially when his partner on the blue-line is probably gonna be Tyler Myers.

    And again, the most important aspect of all of this? He chose Buffalo over Toronto! Lol.

    • ribs108 - Jul 26, 2014 at 11:40 AM

      To explain the “Mr. No-Compete” comment, I was merely referring to an interview he gave (I think to TSN) where he said he did not remove Toronto from his no-trade list because they were too much of a rivalry with his favourite schoolboy-crush team, the Habs. For the same reason, I assume that Boston was also on the list. My argument is that he should be peaved with the Habs for trading him and therefore as a competitive athlete should WANT to be in a heated rivalry with them, rather than basically saying he doesn’t want to hate them. That’s what I found ‘uncompetitive’ about it. As for the Leafs – there is no easier sports target than them, so I’ve refrained from sinking to the ‘when did THEY last have success’ ranting. Finally, I hope someone offer sheets Subban. He really deserves to be in a market where they (and the coach) don’t constantly hate on him.

  9. wishingtonredslur - Jul 26, 2014 at 11:31 AM

    PK Subban. Worst defenseman on the planet.

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