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Ducks’ Ryan does about-face, signs in Europe

Nov 21, 2012, 3:19 PM EDT

Bobby Ryan #9 of the Anaheim Ducks awaits a face off during the NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on March 31, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Ducks 4-0.
(March 30, 2012 - Source: Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

Well this is interesting.

Anaheim Ducks forward Bobby Ryan — who’s been notably outspoken about his reasons for not signing overseas — has reportedly agreed to join Swedish second division team Mora IK.

News of the signing appeared on Mora’s website Wednesday.

Ryan’s move to Sweden will raise more than a few eyebrows.

In early October, he told the Courier-Post he had zero intention to leave North America or pursue playing opportunities elsewhere.

“I’m going to handle things the way I think things should be handled,” Ryan said. “I’m going to continue to skate with the guys … whether it’s coming back here [to South Jersey] for a couple weeks at a time … I think it’s important to stay here [in the United States] and be part of the solution and not just run from it.”

That wasn’t the first time Ryan expressed a strong opinion about not going overseas.

In September, he told the OC Register he didn’t want to head to Europe and steal another hockey player’s gig.

“I know you’ll lose guys right way,” Ryan said, two days before the lockout began. “That being said, I’m an NHL player. I’m not going to take somebody else’s job overseas.”

But with the lockout nearing Day 70 and CBA talks seemingly going nowhere, Ryan apparently had a change of heart. He’s now set to become the latest in a growing number of locked-out NHLers playing in the Allsvenskan.

He’ll join Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar with Mora, and will soon face off against a number of former opponents: Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Read, Douglas Murray and Patric Hornqvist, to name a few.

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