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Erik Nystrom signs with Djurgarden

Canadiens prospect Erik Nystrom has signed another European deal, making it less likely that he'll be retained by the organization.

Hamilton Bulldogs Hockey Club

After being released from the Hamilton Bulldogs earlier in the year, Erik Nystrom went to the KHL and signed with Medvescak Zagreb in what turned out to be an extremely disappointing 23 games with just one assist to show for it.

When he left the AHL, the Canadiens mentioned that while his skill was there, his strength wasn't ready for the North American pro game, so he needed some time.

Nystrom has moved on from the KHL and has come to a verbal agreement to join the newly promoted Djurgarden in the Swedish Hockey League for the next two years. Djurgarden getting promoted to the SHL is hard for North Americans to understand since we don't see relegation in hockey, but according to Szymon Szemberg, this is the equivalent of the Toronto Maple Leafs being sent to the AHL, and finally clawing their way out of it.

Nystrom is apparently the first signing the team has made coming out of the Allsvenskan, which is a credit to him and his reputation in Sweden. Unfortunately for Habs fans, a two year contract likely means that the Canadiens will lose their rights to Nystrom.

It's still possible that after two more years in Sweden that Nystrom could decide to play for the team that drafted him and sign a contract, but for now, it's best to think of him as a long shot.