Joonas Ronnberg may return to Sheffield Steelers next season - despite an unconventional first campaign in which he played in three different stints.
The 35-year-old Finnish giant quit Sheffield in October because his family - wife and three kids - were finding it hard to cope without him, back home.
But within three games, he was back in the shirt, playing for Steelers in the Continental Cup in Copenhagen.
By late November, he'd gone home again, but circumstances allowed him to return to Sheffield at the end of January - a low key defeat at Milton Keynes.
The defenceman admits it had been a peculiar year and his absences definitely "were not planned" prior to the start of the season.
"Ofcourse when I signed here I thought I was going to be here the whole season" he said, adding he'd hoped everything would go smoothly.
But his initial absence had been hard on his family, he said.
However when his father retired he pitched in more, allowing Ronnberg to go back to South Yorkshire.
"I don't know (whether he'll be back next year) we'll see, but not like this" he said.
"It is not fair for the organisation here, not fair for me and not fair for my family."
Ronnberg didn't know if he could persuade his family to move to Sheffield but would try "for sure" over Summer.
You never know, he said.
He'd missed his family but it had been worth it...he wouldn't be here unless it was worth it, he said.
"I still love to play hockey and it is a great atmosphere here."
He feels "most respected" by team mates and coaches and the fans especially.
Ronnberg will be lining up on Steelers' blue line on Saturday evening at Nottingham Panthers in the Play Off semi final.
Coach Paul Thompson regards his team as the underdog, despite the fact they have matched up well against Nottingham for much of the season.