Vancouver Canucks centre Sammy Pahlsson won't be back next year.
Photograph by: Ric Ernst, PNG
VANCOUVER — As expected, checking centre Sammy Pahlsson won't be back with the Vancouver Canucks for the 2012-13 National Hockey League season after he signed a contract Monday to play for Modo of the Swedish Elite League.
Pahlsson, 34, was a trade deadline acquisition by the Canucks on Feb. 27 from the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Canucks surrendered a pair of fourth-round picks for Pahlsson plus minor-leaguer Taylor Ellington, their 2007 second-round pick who had tumbled down their depth chart. Pahlsson's contract had expired and he was an unrestircted free agent.
"It's both inspiring and exciting to come home to Modo Hockey," Pahlsson said in a release translated from Swedish to English. "It is a big step to decide to move back from the NHL but now that I made the decision, it feels good. What I can promise is that I will always give my best and play hard all the time."
Pahlsson appeared in 24 games for the Canucks, including five in the playoffs, and collected three goals and four assists. All told, he spent 11 seasons in the NHL with Boston, Anaheim, Chicago, Columbus and the Canucks. He won a Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007.
He had 199 points in 798 regular-season games and 29 points in 86 post-season games. Pahlsson played for Modo prior to coming to the NHL in 2000-01.
He said he enjoyed his brief stint with the Canucks.
"It was really fun to have the opportunity to come to Vancouver," Pahlsson continued. "It was also the first time that I represented a Canadian team, and it is special. We had high expectations for the playoffs but, unfortunately, it was a big disappointment. It was tough to go out in the first round against the L.A. Kings, but in retrospect one can see that it was a good team we faced."
Modo general manager Markus Naslund, the former Canuck captain, was happy to lock up the experienced centre for their hometown Ornskoldsvik club.
"He was matched against the best in the world for many years and has done well," Naslund said. "He comes with his routine, attitude and talent to become a key player for us."
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