Max Pacioretty said he’s not concerned about rumors that he could be traded by the Vegas Golden Knights.
“I played in Montreal for 10 years so this is lightweight stuff,” the 32-year-old forward told The Athletic in remarks published Tuesday. “I’ve heard a lot worse. I was a captain too, so you can imagine after a bad year the stuff I heard. This is nothing.”
Pacioretty played for the Montreal Canadiens from 2008-18 and was captain for the last three of those seasons. He was traded to the Golden Knights on Sept. 9, 2018 for forwards Nick Suzuki, Tomas Tatar and a second-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.
Golden Knights owner Bill Foley recently said Pacioretty is “not being shopped” after TSN reported that Vegas was trying to gain NHL salary cap flexibility. Pacioretty has three seasons remaining on a four-year, $28 million contract (average annual value $7 million) he signed one day after he was acquired from the Canadiens.
The Golden Knights traded forward Paul Stastny ($6.5 million AAV) to the Winnipeg Jets on Oct. 9, and defenseman Nate Schmidt ($5.95 million AAV) to the Vancouver Canucks on Oct. 12, the same day they signed defenseman Alex Pietrangelo to a seven-year, $61.6 million contract ($8.8 million AAV).
The NHL salary cap will remain at $81.5 million for this season. An official start date for the season has not yet been announced.
Pacioretty led the Golden Knights with 32 goals and 66 points last season and scored eight points (five goals, three assists) in 16 postseason games before Vegas was eliminated from the Western Conference Final in five games against the Dallas Stars. The No. 22 pick in the 2007 NHL Draft, Pacioretty has scored 554 points (280 goals, 274 assists) in 763 regular-season games and 38 points (20 goals, 18 assists) in 61 postseason games.
In two seasons with the Golden Knights, Pacioretty has scored 106 points (54 goals, 52 assists) in 137 regular-season games and 19 points (10 goals, nine assists) in 23 postseason games.