David Krejci explains why he returned to Bruins, NHL after year in Czech Republic

David Krejci
David Krejci warming up prior to a Bruins game in May, 2021. AP Photo/Kathy Willens

After a yearlong stint in his native Czech Republic, longtime Bruins center David Krejci is set to return to Boston.

Krejci signed a one-year deal with the Bruins on Monday.

He took a few weeks off from hockey after the IHF World Championships in June to clear his mind and discuss career options with his family. That’s when he decided to come back to Boston.

“Boston was my No. 1 option and pretty much my only option,” Krejci said. “I’m glad we got it done. But I also have to give credit to [Patrice Bergeron] and [David Pastrnak]. We had so many conversations in the last few months about coming back or not. They’re the reason I want to go back, to play with those guys again.”


Krejci, who will enter his 16th season with the Bruins, told his agent that Boston was the only team he wanted to sign with.

“I wasn’t ready to retire yet. I wanted to come back to the NHL,” Krejci said. “I told my agent just get a deal done. Do what you’ve got to do, let’s just get it done. I want to be a Boston Bruin next season. Obviously, there was a B plan, but I never wanted it to go that way. I never wanted to play anywhere else. I’m more than happy that I’m a Bruin again.”

Krejci said that the Bruins’ coaching change didn’t affect his return. The Bruins hired Jim Montgomery last month to replace Bruce Cassidy. Krejci said his decision was made before then.

One of the major factors in Krejci’s decision was teaming up with Pastrnak again.

“Who wouldn’t want to play with one of the best players in the world?” Krejci said. “I was like enough that I got to play with him on the same line in the world championship. That was kind of the turning point in my decision, coming back to the NHL. Just playing with him and seeing what we could do together. That was pretty cool.”


It’s been over a decade since Krejci and Bergeron helped lead the Bruins to the 2011 Stanley Cup. Krejci said he’s coming back to make another playoff push.

“I talked to [Bergeron] a lot this summer,” Krejci said. “I’m sure he can speak for himself. But we’re coming back to try to make a push. We’re not sure how many years we’ve got left. But we’re coming back to do something because we believe in the team. So we’ll see what happens.”


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