During the six years he was with the Flyers, Jeff Carter was never known as a wordsmith. When he spoke with the media, he was typically brief and almost always quiet.

But even so, when Carter practically went missing for four days after learning he'd been traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets, it came as a surprise. In fact, the Jackets' brass even felt the need to get proactive – the team's GM, coach and star player flew to Sea Isle City, N.J., on Monday to meet with Carter at his summer home.

A week removed from the blockbuster deal that sent him to the Jackets – and the one that shipped his teammate and best friend Mike Richards to L.A. – Carter said he's finally digested the trade and is beginning to look forward to his new future.

"It was obviously a tough situation for me, something that I had never gone through in my whole hockey career, in junior or anything," Carter said. "But I understand the game, I know that it's part of the game, and things had to be done for the Flyers to do what they needed to do there. I've thought about it, I've come to grips with it, and I'm excited to come to Columbus and have a fresh start. I have a new opportunity there."

Carter lived in downtown Philadelphia, in the Old City neighborhood, and was a part of the Flyers' "Old City Gang" that received a fair deal of criticism over its very public nightlife. Many point to the way the press covered his and Richards' personal lives as the beginning of the sometimes combative relationship between them and the media.

But on Thursday, speaking with the Philly press from Sea Isle, Carter had only fondness for his time spent here and the people he got to know.

"I love Philadelphia," he said. "I don't think that's any secret. I've been with the organization for going on nine years, played with them for six, and absolutely loved my time here. Coming out to the fans every game is a huge pickup for the team, and I can't say enough about how they've been so helpful to us over the years and to myself personally.

"I met so many great people in my time in Philly away from the game. I've made a lot of friends around the city. My teammates, I can't say enough about them. That's one thing the Flyers do, they bring in good people. I've made a lot of lifelong friends that I've played with. With the organization, it's the same as the players they bring in. They have first-class people, through the trainers to the front office, everybody. It's just an unbelievable environment to be in."