The 29-year-old said his move to Greater Western Sydney was about reinvigorating his love of the game, which had faded in his 12 years at the Tigers.
With ongoing calf issues, Deledio only managed 11 games in 2016 – his lowest number in 12 seasons – while Richmond finished a lowly 13th.
“There was some trying times this year when the side’s not going so well and you’re injured yourself so I ultimately came to the decision for a fresh start and the Giants were the perfect fit,” Deledio said on Tuesday.
With his body feeling good, Deledio said he was excited about the prospect of proving himself at a new club, which was just one win away from a grand final berth this season.
“It’s about a fresh start; looking to reinvigorate myself and having to impress new coaches, new fitness staff and new teammates,” Deledio said.
“It’s about wanting to start from day one like I did in ’04.”
He admitted the lure of success at the talent-laden Giants was strong.
“It is for every player,” Deledio said.
“They’re a super-talented side and I’ve enjoyed watching them over the last couple of years because they play an exciting brand.”
The former Tigers vice-captain said it was tough to tell coach Damien Hardwick that he wanted to leave the club, where he felt he had grown up.
“He was initially disappointed it had come to this, that we hadn’t got the success we wanted through this year and through the finals in last three years,” said Deledio.
“He completely understood that after 12 years I needed something new and we had a handshake and a beer and away we went.”
Geelong and the Western Bulldogs were also in the mix, but Deledio felt the late offer from the premiers was a bit rushed. He said he was swayed by two former Tigers now at GWS – football manager Wayne Campbell and coach Leon Cameron.
He also felt moving out of Melbourne would truly represent the fresh challenge.