Mattias Ritola clears waivers, apparently will play for Sweden's Modo
Right wing Mattias Ritola cleared waivers Wednesday, and the Swedish newspaper Expressen reported Ritola is likely to sign with Modo of the Swedish elite league, if he has not already.
“Yeah, I guess I’m disappointed it didn’t work out,” GM Steve Yzerman said. “He’s a really good young man and I believe he’s a good hockey player.”
But Ritola, acquired in October 2010 off waivers from the Red Wings, slipped in the depth chart this season and played just five games with zero points. He declined to report to AHL Norfolk, saying he preferred to work his way back to the NHL by playing in his home country.
For a team trying to rebuild its organizational depth, losing a player with upside has to hurt.
“We’d love to keep Mattias and we’d love to have him here for that depth, but we can’t have it both ways,” Yzerman said. “I think we have enough depth in the organization we’ll be okay.”
As for the entire episode, Yzerman said, “I just think that’s the way the business goes.”