The Montreal Canadiens will not re-sign 16-year veteran defenseman Andrei Markov, the team announced Thursday.
Markov's 119 goals are third-best among Canadiens defensemen. The 38-year-old Russian also recorded 453 assists in 990 career NHL games, with his point total (572) tied with Guy Lapointe for second among franchise defensemen.
"On behalf of the entire organization, I would like to thank Andrei for his great contributions during his 16 seasons as a proud member of the Montreal Canadiens," Canadiens president Geoff Molson said.
"Arguably one of the best defensemen in franchise history, Andrei was a model of dedication to the great game of hockey. A respected figure around the league and among his teammates, Andrei demonstrated leadership both on and off the ice. Andrei's commitment to our franchise was second to none, proven by his overcoming three serious and potentially career-ending injuries. I would like to wish Andrei the best of luck in the next step of his career, and happiness with his family."
Markov collected six goals and 30 assists in 62 games last season, which concluded his three-year, $17.25 million contract. The two-time All-Star is reportedly seeking a two-year, $12 million deal.
The Canadiens signed Karl Alzner to a five-year contract on July 1 and also inked fellow defenseman Mark Streit to a one-year deal on Tuesday.