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Patrik Berglund explains why he walked away from the NHL and millions of dollars

30 novembre 2019
Patrik Berglund's decision to leave the NHL and walk away from millions of dollars in guaranteed money was surprising to many when it happened in December of last year. Berglund, a former first round pick of the St. Louis Blues, left more than $13 million on the table after deciding to leave the Buffalo Sabres. He's now letting everyone know why in a new feature by Sportsnet.

On July 1st of 2018, Berglund, along with Tage Thompson, Vladimir Sobotka, a first-round pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft and a second-round pick in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, were traded by the Blues to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for Ryan O'Reilly. Berglund could have blocked the trade, but he failed to submit paperwork by the deadline. Bergland told Sportsnet that things started doing downhill the day after the exchange. Berglund played in October and November of 2018, but wasn't the same player he had been in St. Louis. He tells Sportsnet in the interview that he became unhappy and anxious in Buffalo. His father Anders said he believes he never got over the initial shock of the trade. On December 15th, Berglund was suspended by the Sabres for failing to show up for practice. Shortly after, he and Buffalo came to a mutual agreement to terminate his contract.

“I supported him all the way and I told him to listen to his heart,” Anders Berglund told Sportsnet. “Everybody was talking to me about all the money, but Patrik has never been raised to have money as a factor for life.”


Patrik later said in an interview that he was no longer happy playing professional hockey and was taking a hiatus from the game to improve his mental health. Now, he is the captain of Djurgardens in the SHL. Even though he's making much, much less than he would in the NHL, he told Sportsnet he's much happier.

“I know exactly how much money I left,” Berglund told Sportsnet in the interview, adding the money made no difference to him.

“I don’t know how much money you need to be happy, but I’m good,” said Berglund.

After close to 700 NHL games with St. Louis, Berglund played just 23 with Buffalo before deciding he was done in North America.

You can watch the full feature below.

SURVEY
Which scenario would you prefer if the NHL season restart?
END OF REGULAR SEASON + PLAYOFFS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH 16 TEAMS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH MORE TEAMS
IT'S BETTER TO CANCEL THE SEASON
QUIZ ON TRADERUMOURS
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Which animal appears on the MGM Studios logo?
A LEOPARD
A LION
A SHARK
AN EAGLE
SURVEY
Which scenario would you prefer if the NHL season restart?
END OF REGULAR SEASON + PLAYOFFS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH 16 TEAMS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH MORE TEAMS
IT'S BETTER TO CANCEL THE SEASON