“My dream was always to win a Stanley Cup and bring it to Montreal,” he said.
“I can’t imagine how it would feel. Now, it’s time to move on.”
Markov said he made it clear to the organization that he wanted to stay with the Habs until the end of his career, adding that he’s not ready to retire any time soon.
“To make a deal, it always takes two people, you know? I don’t want to go through the numbers. It is what it is right now,” he said, confirming that he was trying to sign a one-year deal with the team.
“I’m not closing my door to Montreal and I’m not closing my door to the NHL.”
He will go back to Russia to play in the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL).
Markov has played with the Habs for his entire 16-year NHL career — that’s 990 games — putting him sixth on the team’s all-time leaderboard for games played.
“Andrei was a model of dedication to the great game of hockey. A respected figure around the league and among his teammates, Andrei demonstrated leadership both on and off the ice,” said Canadiens President and CEO Geoff Molson in a statement.
“Andrei’s commitment to our franchise was second to none, proven by his overcoming three serious and potentially career-ending injuries.”
The Russian rearguard has also suited up for 89 post-season tilts during his time with the Habs.
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Since making his NHL debut in 2000, Markov has garnered 572 regular-season points, including 119 goals.
According to the organization, the 38-year-old is tied with Hall of Famer Guy Lapointe for second place in team history for points by a defenseman and is third for goals from the back end.
The blueliner was drafted in the sixth round, 162nd overall by Montreal in 1998 and became a Canadian citizen in July 2010.
© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
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Originally posted 2017-07-27 14:43:02. Republished by Blog Post Promoter