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Departures: Robidas leaves Finnish team, Stewart exits Germany

Dec 6, 2012, 1:41 PM EDT

Robidas Getty Images

Two more locked-out NHLers parted ways with their European clubs on Wednesday.

The first was Dallas Stars defenseman Stephane Robidas, who opted not to extend his contract with Finnish team HIFK Helsinki.

Robidas, 35, signed with the SM-liiga club back in early October, joining fellow locked-out NHLers Lennart Petrett and Sean Bergenheim.

He appeared in 15 games for HIFK and recorded 2G-3A-5PTS, racking up 22 penalty minutes and a ghastly minus-11 rating (though possibly not all his doing — Helsinki sits a disappointing 10th in the 14-team league.)

The second player to return home was St. Louis Blues forward Chris Stewart, who left German second division club Crimmitschau.

According to a hasty Google translate of the Crimmitschau press release, Stewart returned to Canada because he was one of the players that “received from their managers to call for a return to North America and to prepare for an early start to the season may soon.”

So yeah.

The departure marks an end to Stewart’s wild European adventure — he first signed in Germany (along with Wayne Simmonds) in late September, then jumped ship (again, with Simmonds) in October to sign with Liberec of the Czech Extraliga.

In November, Stewart abruptly left the Czech Republic for a reunion with Crimmitschau, not long after the ugly racial chants incident involving Simmonds and fans of Extraliga club Chomutov.

  1. thailer35 - Dec 6, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Players wanting to be home, showered, and unpacked before training camp begins??

    • bigtganks - Dec 6, 2012 at 2:03 PM

      My thoughts too… I love how all these players sign and then leave their teams. I think it’s smart many leagues don’t want NHL players locked out.

      Hopefully they’re getting calls to come home because camp will probably start in a week.

  2. shoobiedoobin - Dec 6, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    Where there’s smoke there’s probably fire. There may have been some truth to the rumors that teams were letting players know to come home.

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