David Krejci: Boston Bruins Center Set to Return from Czech Republic

Chris BlanchardContributor IIIDecember 23, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 19:  David Krejci #46 of the Boston Bruins battles for the puck against the Joel Ward #42 of the Washington Capitals in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Verizon Center on April 19, 2012 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Boston Bruins center David Krejci has ended a successful stint with the Czech Extraliga's HC Pardubice, according to the team's website. Krejci will be joined in his Pardubice exit by Edmonton's Ales Hemsky and Detroit's Jakub Kindl. 

After 24 Extraliga games, Krejci leaves the league ranked No. 15 in points with 27. He tied for No. 2 on his team in points behind Hemsky but led the squad in goals with 16. 

Krejci's offensive output was encouraging after a somewhat disappointing 2011-12 season that saw him demoted from Boston's top line. He was held without a point in just five games, recording multiple points in six contests. 

He is the second Bruin to announce his imminent return to North America this week, with Patrice Bergeron preparing to leave Switzerland after representing Canada in the Spengler Cup alongside Tyler Seguin. 

Krejci and Bergeron are now two of four Bruins to cease playing abroad this season. Goaltender Tuukka Rask and Chris Kelly left Europe at the end of November. 

The rising tide of returning players may imply that CBA negotiations are not as dire as once thought. Back on home turf, Bruins players will likely continue informal practices with the intention of playing NHL hockey sometime in January. 

Eight Boston Bruins remain overseas, including Captain Zdeno Chara, Dennis Seidenberg and Seguin. Boston's stars have enjoyed incredible success this fall with Krejci, Seguin and Bergeron averaging more than a point per game, while Rask has dominated in net for the Czech Republic's HC Plzen. 

Hopefully, the rush of returning players is more than a mirage of hockey on the horizon.