Karlsson leaving Finnish team

Ottawa Senator Erik Karlsson during practice in Ottawa Tuesday Sept 25, 2012. (QMI Agency/TONY...

Ottawa Senator Erik Karlsson during practice in Ottawa Tuesday Sept 25, 2012. (QMI Agency/TONY CALDWELL)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:25 PM ET

Erik Karlsson is returning home to Sweden for the new year.

The Senators defenceman is leaving Jokerit, the team he is playing for in the Finnish Elite League, after games on Friday and Saturday. The reigning Norris Trophy winner told the club's website he could return if the NHL lockout kills the 2012-13 season.

"There is a big chance that I will return if the lockout continues throughout the season," Karlsson, 22, said.

Karlsson has seven goals and 20 assists in 28 games with the Helsinki-based team this season.

Kyle Turris, the other Senator in the top Finnish league, also left his team -- Karpat -- this month.


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