"It was great, it was just a good feeling," he told the Sun. "If I'd gone to another team, it probably would have been to team in the playoffs or competing for a spot. But to be able to do it here is a lot more special, because I've been here all year.
"I just feel good knowing I'm here the rest of the year and who knows after that? But for right now, it's just a good time to be a part of this team."
Several teams showed interest in Whitney, including the Detroit Red Wings and Boston Bruins, but a deal never materialized.
Whitney, 30, is in the final year of his current contract and is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this summer.
"As any fan would, people love the trade talk and it's a lot easier when you're looking at it from the outside and you think it's cool," Whitney said. "But when you're saying good-bye to people and moving, it's a lot tougher than I think people realize, getting traded.
"It's great that we didn't lose anyone from here. Instead, we added a guy (Jerred Smithson) that I think is going to help. It's cool that nobody had to say good-bye or start over. It's that same group that we think we can make the playoffs with."