Ice hockey: Dean Kukan leaves the NHL and will play in Switzerland next season


The Zurich defender, who has been playing in Columbus since 2015, has announced that he will skate in the National League in September.

This season, Dean Kukan has played 41 games with Columbus (11 points).

This season, Dean Kukan has played 41 games with Columbus (11 points).


Member of the defensive brigade of the Swiss team currently engaged in the World Championship in Finland, Dean Kukan (28) revealed to the « Corriere del Ticino » that he was leaving the NHL championship and that he will evolve with a team of the National League, from the start of the 2022/2023 season. Without specifying with which.

Never drafted by a club in the North American professional league, the Zurich native had managed to establish himself in the most competitive championship on the planet in 2015 when he agreed with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Since then, after navigating between the big Ohio club and the so-called minor leagues, he has taken on a supporting role in the formation now coached by Canadian Brad Larsen.

172 NHL games

Sometimes aligned with the third defensive pair, sometimes forced to follow the games from the stands, he also suffered several injuries which forced him to miss his turn. His contract with the “Blue Tunics” expired at the end of the regular 2021/2022 campaign.

Since 2015, Kukan has made 153 regular season appearances with the Blue Jackets. He scored five goals and was credited with 25 assists. He added a goal and an assist in 19 playoff games to his record.

At the Helsinki World Cup, where the Swiss team won its first four group matches, the former ZSC Lions junior, has a differential of +3.

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