Nazem Kadri nixed a trade last month that would have sent him from the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Calgary Flames.
Appearing on Sportsnet's "31 Thoughts: The Podcast," the 28-year-old forward said he exercised his 10-team, no-trade clause because he wanted to play in Toronto this season.
"So what happened is they had a deal in place and they wanted me to move my no-trade clause," Kadri said. "But you know, obviously, for me, it was no disrespect to Calgary or the Flames organization. I love their team and I love the direction they're headed. I just figured that had I declined, I would have had a better opportunity of being a Maple Leaf next year and that's really what it came down to. I wanted to play for the Leafs next year. I wanted to be a part of that. In declining that trade I had aspirations of being a Leaf and we know clearly that didn't happen."
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Kadri was traded by the Maple Leafs with defenseman Calle Rosen and a third-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft to the Colorado Avalanche on July 1 for defenseman Tyson Barrie, forward Alexander Kerfoot and a sixth-round pick in the 2020 draft.
"[Toronto] had other plans," Kadri said. "I'm just happy to be moving to a great city with a great team, a great group of guys. I've talked to everybody in the (Colorado) organization and they're ecstatic to have me so it's nice to be wanted.
"I mean, I understand it's a business. … For me, it's about going in to next season with a chip on my shoulder. I know what I'm capable of and I want to just prove a point more than anything. So I'll be looking to have a big year next year."
Kadri, who has three seasons remaining on a six-year contract he signed with Toronto on April 13, 2016, had 44 points (16 goals, 28 assists) in 73 games last season and figures to play in the top-six forward group for Colorado, which advanced to the 2019 Western Conference Second Round.