Jonathan Ericsson is getting worn out in Swedish league


Playing hockey abroad can be rigorous. For Detroit’s Jonathan Ericsson, it’s proving to be even more demanding than life in the NHL has been.

Ted Kulfan of the The Detroit News hears from the big blue liner about his time away in Sweden and finds out that at 30 minutes of ice time per game, he’s found out how out of shape he was.

“In the third period I was cramping every shift,” said Ericsson of his first game back. “It was a lot of ice time right away and, of course, I wasn’t use to playing. I hadn’t played in five months.”

The most ice time in a game he’s had in the NHL came back during the 2009-10 season when he had a pair of games with 28-plus minutes of action. Talk about trial by fire.

Ericsson has played three games for Vita Hasten in the Swedish second league but won’t be returning thanks to tax regulations in Sweden.

He might have to get used to those big minutes because he could wind up being a bigger blue line factor for Detroit should this season happen.

Red Wings’ Ericsson signs with third-tier Swedish team


While many NHL players are taking their games to the major leagues of Finland, Russia, Switzerland, and Czech Republic – Detroit’s Jonathan Ericsson is taking things in a different direction.

Bob Duff of The Windsor Star reports Ericsson will head to Sweden to play for Vita Hästen in the 3rd division. Comparatively, that’s like playing in that country’s version of the ECHL. He played for Vita Hästen in his first season of pro hockey back in 2002-03 as an 18 year-old.

While he had a breakout in the playoffs back in 2009, he’s had his ups and downs with the Wings since then. That didn’t stop the team from signing him to a three-year, $9.75 million deal in the summer of 2011.

With Nicklas Lidstrom retired and Brad Stuart in San Jose, he’s now by default one of Detroit’s top four blue liners.