The journey continues for a veteran NHLer, as Justin Abdelkader will be playing in Switzerland for the rest of the season. EV Zug of the Swiss National League has signed Abdelkader through the end of the season after Carl Klingberg went down to injury.
This is no longshot though. The organization is already very familiar with Abdelkader, who played for them in the 2020-21 season and helped win a league championship. Arriving late in the year he was tremendous for the club in the playoffs, scoring six goals and nine points in 13 games (while racking up an impressive 47 penalty minutes). He was good again last year for HC Lugano’s playoff run, while also competing for the U.S. at the Olympics.
Now 35, Abdelkader’s NHL career is long past. He finished with 739 games played, all of them for the Detroit Red Wings, and racked up 252 points. Not bad for a kid from Muskegon, after starring at Michigan State. Abdelkader also captained Team USA at two different World Championships and suited up for his country at the 2016 World Cup.
Finishing off your playing days in Switzerland certainly doesn’t sound like the worst experience, and he’ll go for another league title this year with Zug.
Abelkader was a decent NHL player but never deserved the huge contract Kenny Holland gave him. Red Wings bought him out and will be paying him for several more years due to this mistake