Every time I check Elias Pettersson’s Instagram or Twitter, he’s doing something.
First, it was his silly response to my basketball challenge. Occasionally, it’s a scooter ride along the Vancouver Seawall. Now, this:
— On The Bench (@onthebenchcrew) October 10, 2020
On social media, hockey personalities Olly (Steve Campbell) & Jacob (Ryan Russell) also known as On the Bench, posted a photo with the skilled Swedish forward decked out in complete Canucks goalie attire: Jacob Markstrom’s old mask, pads and all.
In an email interview, I asked the duo if they kept tabs on Elias’ interactive social media game during the offseason, to which they said they do, saying, “the Vancouver fan base is lucky to have a player/personality like Petey.” They referred to his hilarious Matrix tweet, which Pettersson posted as a response to users editing his photoshoots in Downtown Vancouver.
Speaking of which, Pettersson subsequently posted some aesthetic film photos from the video on his Instagram, which added to the hype and incited some hilarious comments due to the Canucks’ recent goalie changes.
Elias Net-ersson 🥅
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) October 21, 2020
With both Jacob Markstrom and Louis Domingue moving on to the Calgary Flames during Free Agency, Pettersson probably thought Thatcher Demko was feeling a bit lonely. On the contrary, Demko immediately chirped him, betting that Olly “lit him up”, to which Pettersson cheekily said, “no chance that happened.” And, proven in the video, Petey didn’t lie.
On the Bench is known for their amusing hockey lessons, providing tips to professional hockey players who don’t really need it. Their previous Canucks collaborations were with then-rookie Quinn Hughes and now former defenceman (sigh) Chris Tanev.
According to Olly and Jacob, this video has been in the works for a while. I could basically hear their cheerfully-exaggerated Canadian accents through the email in this humble brag:
“Petey has been blowing up our pagers for awhile trying to appear in an eppie. When we finally had some downtime, we figured we would make the little guy’s dreams come true.”
The duo, from Airdrie, AB, drove 12 hours (passing “about a hundred Timmies”) for this video. The devotion for even more Petey content is greatly appreciated by Canucks fans, especially after some significant losses on the roster.
— Hans (@S7Dsn) October 24, 2020
I made sure to ask the Albertan natives what they thought about the ‘Calgary Canucks’, which many Canucks fans joked about online as the club scooped up four of Vancouver’s Free Agents, adding Josh Leivo on Saturday. Olly and Jacob were clearly excited:
“Getting that beast (Markstrom) between the pipes with a solid back-up should make us unstoppable. Obviously, Tanev is gunna come in and hold up the bluey like we expect… The Flames definitely won with their pick-ups, but the ‘Nucks look good with Holtby protecting the twine.”
Indeed, everybody will certainly be looking forward to the first Canucks-Flames game of the 2020-21 season. With considerations of a potential All-Canadian Division, expect a new, fiery rivalry.
Originally, Olly and Jacob were going to help Pettersson improve his slapshots, but Petey came up with the idea of becoming a netminder. He told the duo that he brought a goalie friend to test their shots, so they assumed Demko would pop in. Instead, Pettersson returned to the ice in full gear, they mistaken him to be Marky, and the rest is history.
On the Bench was impressed after the session, but claimed that his remarkable saves were a result of “wearing illegal equipment” and complained that he’s “like 7 foot tall, so he can just stretch out nice and far”. However, they had one reasonable, interesting excuse:
“We later found out he used to be a soccer Tendy back home so that probably helped him get lucky a few times.”
That’s right, Pettersson used to be a soccer goalie in Sweden. At this point, the only question is what has Elias Pettersson not done?
Overall, his netminding performance was impressive, as many users praised it on social media. Be it other sports, fashion, and now different positions within hockey, Pettersson has demonstrated yet another thing he excels at during the offseason.
Fortunately, former Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby filled the Canucks’ vacant goalie spot for the next two years, but it’s nice to know Pettersson’s ready to take one for the team, just in case.