Nathan Légaré found out about trade to Canadiens while walking in Montreal

Aug 10 2023, 8:10 pm

In the blockbuster trade that saw the Montreal Canadiens send Mike Hoffman and Rem Pitlick to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Jeff Petry, Casey DeSmith, and a 2025 second-round draft pick, the Habs also acquired a hometown talent in Nathan Légaré.

The French-Canadian forward, who was added in as a sweetener in the high-level deal, was the most recent guest on the Sans Restriction podcast. In the interview, the 22-year-old discussed how he found out Pittsburgh traded him to Montreal — while he was in Montreal.

The news came to him while he was on a walk with his girlfriend at Marché aux Puces Métropolitain. The 22-year-old said when he saw someone from the Penguins’ management was calling his phone on a Sunday morning, he knew he was being traded.

“We were taking a walk outside (…), and I looked at my Apple watch. I saw the name Eric Heasley, one of the front office guys in Pittsburgh,” Légaré explained in French. “I looked at my girlfriend and said, ‘Oh no, it looks like I’ve been traded.'”

@sansrestriction Nathan Légaré raconte comment il a appris l’echange à Montréal. #nhl #lnh #hockey #quebec #canada #anecdotes #podcast #sansrestriction #drole #funny #nhlers #quebec #canada #montreal #kevinraphael #habs #gohabsgo #nathanlegare #canadiensdemontreal #hockeymontreal #hockeymomsnt #hockeytiktoks #hockeyboys #foryou #viral #folllow #habs #rockets #foryou #viral #likes ♬ son original – sansrestriction

Disappoint faded, though, when Légaré, a third-round draft pick in 2019, found out he had been dealt to his hometown team.

“It was really a mix of feelings and emotions — happy, but a lot of questions came up in my mind,” he said. “I’m very honoured to be in the Canadiens organization.”

“When I called my parents, my dad was in the garage (…) In the beginning, he was shocked,” Légaré explained. “Everyone thought I was kidding.”

Shortly after finding out about being involved in the deal, Légaré thanked the Penguins and their AHL affiliate organization in an Instagram post.

“Thanks to the fans in Wilkes-Barre who made me feel at home for the past two seasons,” he wrote in the caption.

“Very excited to join my childhood team,” he added in French. “Go, Habs, go.”

 

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A post shared by Nathan Légaré (@n.legare29)

The 6-foot forward netted eight goals and 19 points over 68 AHL games last year. With a year remaining on his contract, he is expected to start the season with the Laval Rocket.

Légaré says he’s already familiar with multiple Laval players like Gabriel Bourque, Brandon Gignac, and his childhood friend Christopher Merisier-Ortiz.

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