After failing to secure a contract with Columbus after attending training camp with them on a PTO agreement, veteran Victor Rask has found his next team as Fribourg-Gotteron of the Swiss NLA announced that they’ve signed the center to a one-year deal.
The 29-year-old started his career with Carolina and quickly became a key two-way player for them, breaking in as a full-timer in 2014-15. Early on, it looked as if he was going to be an integral part of their long-term plans. However, Rask’s production fell off considerably in 2018-19 which led to a trade involving a pair of players who were underachieving. It worked out great for the Hurricanes as they landed Nino Niederreiter but not so well for Minnesota as Rask’s struggles continued.
Over the last few seasons, Rask’s role dropped from being a top-six regular to a fourth liner to being out of the lineup as a reserve forward altogether. He cleared waivers last season and was briefly sent to the minors before Seattle acquired him at the trade deadline. Rask played relatively well for the Kraken, notching eight points in 18 games down the stretch but it wasn’t enough to secure him a guaranteed NHL deal this summer.
A move overseas might very well be what is best for Rask at this point in his career. Rather than serving in a reserve forward role (which is likely what he would have had if he earned a deal with Columbus) or as a minor league recall, going to Switzerland will give him an opportunity to play the type of minutes he had with Carolina at the beginning of his career. A good showing in that role with Fribourg-Gotteron could get Rask back on the NHL radar as soon as next summer which would certainly make this decision a wise one.