VANCOUVER, BC – FEBRUARY 23: David Krejci #46 of Czech Republic skates with the puck during the ice hockey Men’s Play-off qualification match between the Czech Republic and Latvia on day 12 of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics at UBC Thunderbird Arena on February 23, 2010 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
It took Bruins center David Krejci, fresh off announcing that he was returning to his native Czech Republic, less than three days to find his Czech League team, as revealed in a video dropped by HC Olomouc on Monday morning.
A 20-minute drive (just over 11 miles) from Krejci’s hometown of Sternberk, the move to HC Olomouc will be his first jump back into Czech League action since Krejci appeared in 24 games for HC Pardubice during the 2012 NHL lockout. It will also represent a homecoming for Krejci, too, who played for HC Olomouc’s junior team in 2000-01.
“The numbers speak for themselves,” HC Olomouc coach Jan Tomajko said (via Google Translate) in a statement confirming Krejci’s signing. “It’s admirable what David did in the NHL. Every coach would like to have such a player on their team. I am convinced that with its quality and experience it will move us one step higher again.”
The move back home will certainly come with a definite shock of sorts, as HC Olomouc’s home arena has a maximum capacity of 5,500 (compared to TD Garden’s nearly 18,000), but that’s not what this move is about for the 35-year-old Krejci.
“At this point in my career and life I need to return to the Czech Republic and play in front of my family who sacrificed so much to help me achieve my NHL dreams,” Krejci wrote in his departure statement dropped last Friday afternoon. “I want to play in front of my parents, brother and friends. I want my children to live where I grew up, spend time with so many Czech family members who love them and create lifelong memories.”
In case you’re wondering, Krejci’s 2021-22 season in the Czech League will come with a meeting against Jaromir Jagr’s Kladno squad after they earned a promotion out of the Czech’s second-highest league this past season. Jagr is the team owner, team president, and plays on the team. Because of course he does.
Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.