Justin Abdelkader has signed a professional tryout contract with the Grand Rapid Griffins. When seeing as how Team USA already has their roster announced, it seems that the winger is looking to resume his professional hockey career.
Abdelkader played the entirety of his NHL career with the Detroit Red Wings. In 739 games with the franchise, the Michigan native had 106 goals, 146 assists, and 252 points. He also memorably represented Team USA during the 2016 World Cup of Hockey and was an alternate captain for Detroit.
During his best years at the NHL level, he was a hard-working grinder who could hit 40 to 45 points per season. However, during his last two seasons with the team, he only had 22 points in 120 games. With that, during the 2019-20 season, he had just three assists in 49 contests. This, understandably, led Detroit to buy him out from the remainder of his seven-year, $29.75 million contract.
It would be cool to see Abdelkader fight his way back to the NHL, but even a permanent stay with the Griffins would be a nice win for the veteran. Let’s see what happens with the 34-year-old winger from here.
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