Moore says he wasn't greedy

Dominic Moore says he wanted to stay with the Maple Leafs. (Dave Abel/QMI Agency)

Dominic Moore says he wanted to stay with the Maple Leafs. (Dave Abel/QMI Agency)

MIKE ZEISBERGER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 3:18 PM ET

Dominic Moore claims he is not the greedy money-hungry boor some have portrayed him out to be.

Anything but.

When the Toronto-area native could not come to an agreement for a contract extension with his beloved Maple Leafs prior to the 2009 trade deadline, he begrudgingly was shipped to the Buffalo Sabres for a second round pick. Because he was a pending unrestricted free agent, the Leafs opted to get some kind of tangible return for the speedy forward rather than lose him in the open market during the off-season.

At the time of the deal to Buffalo, there were reports that he had turned down a three-year, $5 million US offer from the Leafs. For the record, Moore denies those numbers were accurate.

“The circumstances surrounding the situation at the time made it seem as if I turned down a fair offer,” Moore said Saturday. “It kind of painted me in a negative light.

“At the time, we didn’t think the offer was fair. I was traded right afterward.”

“I will say this: The offer that was made was not what was reported.”

While Moore would not divulge what the Leafs had submitted in terms of a contract extension, sources insist the deal was in the two-year, $2.8 million US neighbourhood, a pact that would have left him with an annual salary of $1.4 million.

“I’m not going to talk about numbers,” Moore said, refusing to verify if the two-year, $2.8 million US figures were accurate. “But you know how much I loved it here. I grew up a Leaf fan. I wanted to stay. Obviously for me not to have agreed (to an extension) is an indication of how we didn’t feel the offer was fair.”

After finishing the 2008-09 season with the Sabres, Moore signed a one-year, $1.1 million US pact with the Florida Panthers on Oct. 4, just after the season began. He subsequently was traded to the Montreal Canadiens earlier this month for a second-round pick.

Saturday night, Moore gets his first taste of the Toronto-Montreal rivalry from a Habs perspective, marking the first time he will face the Leafs in a Canadiens jersey.

“It’s been amazing, what with the tradition and all,” Moore said of being a Hab. “Right now the main goal is to grab a playoff spot.”

mike.zeisberger@sunmedia.ca


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