BROSSARD - Keith Kinkaid wasn't satisfied with his play last season, so he's hoping a change of address might just be the remedy.
On Monday, the 29-year-old goaltender agreed to terms with the Canadiens on a one-year, one-way contract shortly after the unrestricted free-agent market opened at 12:00 p.m. ET.
Kinkaid strung together a 15-18-6 record in 41 appearances with the New Jersey Devils last season - and registered a 3.36 goals-against average, a .891 save percentage and three shutouts - before being dealt to the Columbus Blue Jackets at the trade deadline in February.
He never saw game action for the Ohio-based franchise, though, playing behind now former starter, Sergei Bobrovsky.
"It's a one-year contract, so it's good for both sides right now. I just want to come in and be the best teammate on and off the ice, work hard and essentially have a bounce-back season and help the Canadians win games," said Kinkaid via conference call from Hoboken, NJ. "Hopefully, we can return to the playoffs after missing last year. I'm just excited to be a part of it and excited to have the opportunity to work with such a young and up-and-coming team like that."
Video: Conference call: Keith Kinkaid
The chance to ply his trade alongside Carey Price was also too good to pass up.
"It's going to be really exciting to work with him, bounce ideas off each other and see how one another works with each other," said Kinkaid, of his new partner in between the pipes. "I can gain a lot of skills from him and see how he goes about his day on and off the ice. I'm very excited to be a part of the organization and work with him."
The city's incredible passion for the club was another real selling point for the Farmingville, NY native when it came time to figuring out his next move and finding a brand new hockey home.
His recent visit to Montreal only cemented his interest in joining the Habs.
"I know they expect a lot of their team. It's a hockey town there, so I'm very excited for that and I think you can thrive under that type of pressure and excitement. I'm looking forward to meeting some of the fans and playing in front of them and being in Montreal," mentioned Kinkaid, who will celebrate his 30th birthday on July 4th. "It's a beautiful city every time I've been there, and especially my visit last week. It was a gorgeous day."
Learning from a subpar season
Even though the 2018-19 campaign didn't go as planned for the six-year NHL veteran, he believes it provided him with valuable experience nonetheless.
"Everything happens for a reason. I think I can learn from last year, and even learn from the year before. Never get too high, never get too low, just learn to deal with the roughness of the NHL season," said Kinkaid, who boasts 151 games of NHL experience, all with New Jersey since debuting back in 2012-13. "I'm still always learning day in and day out."
And that cool demeanor is plain to see if you follow Kinkaid's always amusing Twitter account, @Blockaid1.
"Part of the thing that comes with me is personality, so I'm going to have to do some deep thinking, maybe revamp a few tweets," concluded Kinkaid. "I just like to have fun. I'm just kind of a laid back guy. I like to have fun, but work hard at the same time."