Ference finishes up stint in Czech Republic

Ference finishes up stint in Czech Republic
December 27, 2012, 5:21 am
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Andrew Ference is among the many NHL players headed home this week after his contract concluded with his European team in the Czech Extraliga. Ference had 2 goals and seven assists in 21 games for the same HC Ceske Budejovice that he skated for during the 2004-05 NHL lockout, but is returning to Boston in the hopes that a shortened regular season will be salvaged.
Tracking his twitter account, Ference is spending the holidays with his family in Europe after playing his final game for the Czech League on Sunday. The veteran Bruins defenseman called that final game for Budejovice as one of his most memorable nights of hockey.
Ference joins David Krejci and Patrice Bergeron as Bruins players that have ended their stints with European clubs during the NHL lockout, and now sit in a holding pattern waiting for the final outcome of negotiations between the NHL and NHLPA.
Ference is in the final year of a three-contract extension with the Bruins, and headed to Europe in an effort to hit the ground running when a shortened NHL season did begin in Boston. The Bruins defensemen corps as a whole is in good shape should the NHL season begin in January four of the returning veterans have been playing regularly in Europe and 19-year-old Dougie Hamilton has been logging heavy minutes skating in the OHL and World Junior Championships.
The lockout moved to Day No. 101 on Wednesday and has shown no signs of slowing down as there are still no face-to-face negotiations scheduled between the NHL and NHLPA. Its expected the season will be cancelled next month if the two sides cant finally find common ground on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.