Monday, in order to strengthen their problem defense, the Anaheim Ducks decided to sign veteran defenseman Andreas Lilja. The contract is reportedly only for a single year but is worth $600,000. Don’t expect to see the veteran on the ice immediately as there are some visa issues that he is having to work out prior to being able to play, reportedly.
The agreement between the Ducks and the 35-year-old veteran defenseman came over the weekend, not too long after Anaheim lost one of their top defensemen to a broken thumb – Andy Sutton suffered the injury to his right thumb Friday evening. In addition, the Ducks are also without their newly signed defenseman, Tony Lydman, who has been out since before training camp due to serious case of double vision that could have been connected to and caused by severe migraines. Therefore, with those two out, who were the top defensemen for the team, it was no wonder that the Ducks went forward with signing someone to help reinforce their defense.
A Native of Sweden, Lilja has had his own period of injuries as he missed almost an entire year of playing due to suffering a concussion back in February of 2009 when playing for the Detroit Red Wings. He was with Detroit for 20 games and 11 playoff games last year and after being with them for five years, he decided that he would take his chance on the free agent market and rejected an offer that he received from the Red Wings to do so.
Originally drafted during the second round of the 2000 NHL Entry Draft by Los Angeles, he has played a total of nine NHL seasons and 478 NHL contests between Los Angeles, Florida and Detroit. He will now enter his tenth year with the Anaheim Ducks for a new journey in the NHL.
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