Highlights and notes from the Andrei Markov conference call

The departing veteran spoke about his future and the decision to leave the Canadiens for the KHL

Andrei Markov held a press conference on Thursday afternoon, organized by the Montreal Canadiens, to announce his departure from the team. He started off the press conference with a “Bonjour” and then gave a pre-written statement.

In typical Markov fashion, even though you could tell he was having a hard time getting through his written statement, he still managed to fit in one of his typical dry-wit jokes.

At the start of question time he made it clear that he didn’t want to get into detail regarding the negotiations, but slowly and surely some drips of information started to come out.

First of all he made the announcement that he wasn’t retiring.

A two-year contract was his desire for the security of his family, saying that he still feels good and he was ready to stay in Montreal. As the negotiation continued he let it be known that he was willing to sign a one year deal, but it didn’t work.

The Montreal Canadiens wanted to wait until September or October before deciding on bringing him back. Markov’s decision to leave was made a few days ago because he wanted to provide stability for his family, notably knowing where his kids would go to school.

He doesn’t hold anyone accountable, and calls it a business decision. He does have other options. He has spoken with other teams.

Then he dropped a bombshell that he was going to continue his career in the KHL because, although he had some options in the NHL, he couldn’t see himself wearing another jersey. He knows which team he will be playing with in the KHL, but the contract is not yet signed, so he didn’t want to mention what team it was.

Then the question of Olympic participation came up, noting that it would be a dream for him to win Olympic gold for Russia.

Markov is not closing the door to a return to the NHL, and more specifically to the Montreal Canadiens, which was Tweeted out by the Canadiens themselves.

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