Chad Kolarik Signs Two-Year Deal with Linkoping (SHL)

Friday, June 28, 2013

It seems as though there is a theme with these crop of unrestricted free agents. The latest to sign overseas is dynamic scoring forward Chad Kolarik, who joins the Linkoping Hockey Club (LHC) in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL). Here's the team's official press release.

Kolarik was an offensive leader of this team, posting 11 points (5G-6A) in 15 playoff games for the Penguins and finished third in the AHL in the regular season scoring race with 68 points (31G-37A) in 76 games. His offensive prowess will certainly be missed in Wilkes-Barre.

I spoke with Kolarik shortly after the news broke that he had signed. His thoughts about playing hockey in Sweden and a final message to Penguins fans after the jump.

"Heading overseas is a new challenge for me hockey-wise," Kolarik told me this afternoon when I spoke with him. "The SHL is a very good league so the competition will still be good."

Kolarik had been in contact with Linkoping throughout the summer and their GM Mike Helber, a former Michigan hockey player, came over to watch Kolarik play in the AHL playoffs. Kolarik is also a Michigan alum, which he added is going to make the transition much easier.

As for his time in Wilkes-Barre with the AHL Penguins, here's what Kolarik had to say:
"The half year in Wilkes was unbelievable. Hockey was great, the facilities are best in the AHL and the organization is at the top as well. I had a blast with the guys on the team, not only on ice but off the ice, the team was a very tight knit group."
"For the fans I thank them for the support they showed us throughout the up and down season. Sorry we couldn't bring a championship to Wilkes."
Here's to wishing Chad all the best over in Sweden. A great player and a good person.

The only NHL unrestricted free agents left that played in Wilkes-Barre last season are forwards Trevor Smith and Warren Peters.

Stay tuned here for all the latest breaking news on Penguins signings this off-season. Follow @H_P_Hockey on Twitter for up to the minute news on the Pens organization.


Post a Comment