The New Jersey Devils traded defenseman Eric Gelinas to the Colorado Avalanche on Monday for a third-round pick in the 2017 NHL Draft.
"I feel it's a great opportunity for me," Gelinas told Sportsnet. "It's been tough and frustrating. It's a clean slate and a fresh start."
Gelinas has one goal and six points in 34 games this season, and has been a healthy scratch the past nine games.
Video: Avs swing deals for Boedker, Gelinas
"My goal was to try to impress the coaching staff in training camp and I did do that. So I set myself up that way," Gelinas said. "It was a battle to gain confidence and trust from the coaches. … I really want to get over there, clear my head and play the way I can play. The way I know I can play. I've had some success offensively and I've grown as a player defensively."
A second-round pick (No. 54) in the 2009 NHL Draft, he had a career-high seven goals and 29 points in 60 games as a rookie in 2013-14.
"We didn't want to ask for a trade or anything like that," Gelinas said. "My challenge was to try to work it out here, earn trust and gain confidence, but I'm gonna go to Colorado and impress the coaches and management and play the way I can play."
Gelinas has 14 goals and 54 points in 156 games with the Devils. Nine of his goals came on the power play.
"My first year, I had success on the power play. My No. 1 thing is, shoot the puck," Gelinas said. "I do that fairly well and that's something that's important on the power play nowadays. That's my biggest asset, so hopefully I get a chance to play there and to use that shot."
Earlier on Monday, the Avalanche acquired forward Mikkel Boedker from the Arizona Coyotes for forwards Alex Tanguay and Conner Bleackley and defenseman Kyle Wood.