Noel Acciari discusses why he re-joined Kyle Dubas in Pittsburgh

It was another reunion between the now-former Leafs GM and an old Leafs player.



Now-former Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas elected to go all-in at last season's NHL Trade Deadline, bringing aboard former 2019 Conn Smythe Trophy winner Ryan O'Reilly from the St. Louis Blues (along with Noel Acciari) while also bringing back former 2008 1st round Draft selection Luke Schenn. 

And while all three players played roles in Toronto finally ending their lengthy postseason skid by winning a round for the first time since 2004, the magic ran out in Round 2 against the eventual Eastern Conference champion Florida Panthers. 

All three players, along with Dubas, are now ex-Leafs. Both O'Reilly and Schenn have signed with the Nashville Predators, while Acciari joined Kyle Dubas and the Pittsburgh Penguins with a three-year, $6 million deal. 

At first, Acciari said that he'd love to remain a member of the Leafs and continue to have the opportunity to play in Canada.

“Playing in Canada, you want to be a Maple Leaf. It’s very special. I was very fortunate to get traded here and experience this all. I’d love to (return)," he said.

However, that changed with the arrival of new GM Brad Treliving following Dubas' dismissal. But he was happy to round with Dubas in Pittsburgh. 

"Kyle and I formed a bit of a relationship toward the end there in Toronto and he told me the plan for Pittsburgh," Acciari told reporters in Pittsburgh last week.

"He's done a great job with all of the guys that have come in," Acciari said of Dubas. "I take it personally getting scored on. Everyone wants to score goals but I want to be good defensively first and then the offense will come from that."

Just how will it all come together for Dubas and the new look Penguins this coming season? 

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