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Hovinen to stay in Europe for 2011-12 season

Sorry for the rapid fire stories here, but via our own Teemu comes the news that Niko Hovinen, the goalie the Flyers signed earlier today to an entry-level contract, will stay in Europe for next season. He'll move to North America for the 2012-13 season, at least according to his Finnish team, the Pelicans.

For the Finnish speakers amongst us:

Hovinen pelaa tulevan kauden Pelicansissa ja siirtyy NHL:ään vasta kaudelle 2012-13, vahvistaa toimitusjohtaja Ilkka Kaarna.

And the horrible Google translation:

Hovinen Pelicans play in the upcoming season and moves on to the NHL until the period 2012-13, confirms CEO Ilkka Kaarna.

This leaves a few extra question marks, and yields a few other potential answers. For starters, he obviously won't be filling a spot in the Flyers system next year. We don't know exactly what that means just yet, but there are still moves to be made -- whether that's re-signing RFA Brian Stewart or whatever else. 

Also, it seems to make sense.

Teemu reported in the comments of our original Hovinen story that he got his game back a bit this last season with the Pelicans after a few years where he seemed to be shaping into a bust. It would only make sense for him to try to continue that growth with another year in Europe, rather than make the jump overseas where he could regress and struggle and never be seen again. 

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