Mika Pyörälä tells why he signed with Frölunda this summer, takes a quick look back on his season with the Flyers and also shares his thoughts on ex-teammate Johan Backlund.
"Nothing had happened at the end of July and there were many other players without a contract. I didn't hear anything, so I started thinking about Europe again."
"There were only two options; Sweden or Russia. I tried to look at the big picture. Gothenburg is a good city and it's a good organization there with a good team that has the chance to go far. That's why I chose to go to Frölunda."
Pyörälä signed a three year contract, but he can leave Frölunda if he gets an offer from the NHL.
Pyörälä had a strong start last season, earning a roster spot on the Flyers, but finished the season in the AHL.
"There were several different reasons for that. The team didn't play so well and they switched coaches right before the holidays. I played less than ten games under the new coach and I think we lost every single one of them. Then all of the injured players became healthy and they made changes in the team and when they started winning games I was eating popcorn in the press box."
"It sucked, but at the same time it was still a fun season and most of all a great experience."
"In the last game with their farm team I broke my collarbone. I would've been one of the Flyers black aces; six or seven farm team players who train with the team and are ready to jump in if someone gets injured. I had bad luck being injured so I couldn't do anything more but just rehab and watch the games."
The Stanley Cup finals were fun to watch nonetheless.
"It was just fantastic. The arena was sold out every game and you could see orange everywhere on the streets. The whole city was into it. Unfortunately they didn't win."
Pyörälä also believes in Johan Backlund's chances to become an NHL player.
"I believe he has a good chance to become an established player in the NHL. He played great all season in the AHL. We didn't have a good team and without Johan we would've lost many more games. I think the Flyers have a plan for him in the future."