P.K. Subban was enjoying some foie gras in a Paris restaurant when his phone rang.
In the midst of his European vacation, Subban was dealt from the Montreal Canadians to the Nashville Predators, a move the all-star defenseman is already embracing.
“I’m just happy,” Subban said via telephone. “I feel good knowing that a team has moved someone because they want me… I’m just happy to be in a situation where I can excel and feel good coming to the rink every day, [I feel good] about myself, about the team, about my position.”
The deal made by Predators General Manager David Poile sent former Nashville Captain Shea Weber to Montreal in exchange for Subban, a move Subban admits wasn’t incredibly surprising after rumors had circulated about the Canadiens potentially looking to trade their star defenseman.
Poile said he and Canadiens General Manager Marc Bergevin began the discussion last weekend in Buffalo at the NHL Draft, with the deal coming together Wednesday afternoon.
Because of that, Subban is now a member of the Nashville Predators, a team he believes can contend for years to come.
“I just want to come in, listen, learn and be a part of this team,” Subban said. “This is a great hockey club that has a lot of potential and a great future ahead. I was traded for their captain, so I would like to think that the expectations are for me to come in and not just be a great player for this franchise, but also a leader.”
Poile, who joked members of the Predators hockey operations department would say Subban is his favorite player, believes he improved his hockey club with the deal, not only today, but for the future.
“P.K. Subban, to me, is one of the best defenseman in the National Hockey League,” Poile said. “He is the modern-day defenseman. He is exciting; he is one of the best skaters in the National Hockey League. Offensively, he is equal to Shea Weber, in terms of what he provides.
“I feel that before today, we had one of the best, if not the top four, defenses in the National Hockey League. And today, after the trade, I am certain we have one of the best defenses in the National Hockey League.”
Subban would agree, interjecting his infectious personality in his own analysis of Nashville’s defensive corps.
“Aside from them being outstanding defensemen and great defensemen, I’d have to say now with an acquisition of myself, and before they were pretty good looking with Shea Weber, but I think they got a whole lot better looking now,” Subban laughed. “We might have the best looking D corps in the League. What do you think of that?”
Poile admitted trading Weber was far from an easy decision, but when Subban’s name came up, he had to listen. He’s happy he did.
“This was a hard deal to make because you’re trading your captain, you’re trading Shea Weber,” Poile said. “We made this deal to improve our team, and that’s what we’ve done today.”
Winning the Stanley Cup is the ultimate goal for any player, and Subban is no different. As he said in a video posted to his Twitter account shortly after the deal was announced, “To my new fans in Nashville, get ready. Howdy. Let’s go.”
Get ready, indeed.
“I just look forward to trying to win a Stanley Cup,” Subban said. “That’s your ultimate goal, and I feel that I got a whole lot closer to doing that today.”