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‘I like having a carrot to work toward’: Elias Pettersson talks about having no stress about his contract situation and the Oliver Ekman-Larsson buyout
By Faber5 months ago
One of our favourite sports media guys out of Sweden is Uffe Bodin. He’s a reliable source for hockey information and does a great job connecting with the top Swedish players in the world.
This was the case in his most recent article for Hockey Sverige — titled ‘Elias Pettersson exudes self-confidence and dissatisfaction at the same time’. Bodin sat down with Elias Pettersson and discussed a multitude of different topics and we’ve gone through and translated the article to highlight noteworthy quotes from Pettersson.
Pettersson began by speaking about his offseason training. He mentioned that he was in Dubai at the beginning of the summer but otherwise, he has focused on training and eating right. His personal trainer is Kalle Engström and the two have been able to live in the same city and work closely as Pettersson looks to build muscle and get stronger every day. Pettersson mentioned that he is trying to get stronger and faster and also disclosed that he has gained a few kilos over the offseason. Good kilos, we assume. Not the ones that we all put on at Christmas.
Before we get to the quotes, they are simply translated from the article through Google so the feeling is accurate but the exact words may vary due to the translation. For the most part, you can get the feeling from his comments.
He spoke about getting time on the penalty kill and enjoying that role.
“I haven’t played that much [penalty kill] before,” said Pettersson in the article. “There was [a] little [time] when Bruce Boudreau came in as coach a few years ago, but since then it has become more. I think it’s crazy fun. I always try to think about what I would have wanted to do as a power play player and read the game that way.”
Bodin mentioned that Pettersson felt stress in connection with his last contract negotiations but this time, Pettersson’s heart rate seems anything but high when the subject of his contract comes up.
“I have put it on hold to focus on training and getting prepared for next season,” said Pettersson. “I have a year left on the contract so in my world there is no stress.”
When asked if there had been any contract talks, Pettersson said, “There has been a bit of talk and there will be all the time, but in my world, there is no stress.”
Bodin asked if pushing contract talks is somewhat of a bet on himself type of scenario.
“Yes, it’s a bit like that,” said Pettersson when he asked about betting on himself. “I like having a carrot to work towards. I don’t feel like it’s a rush, but I’ve wanted to focus on the season.”
Pettersson commented on the Oliver Ekman-Larsson buyout, saying that he “didn’t see that coming,” and that he was sad for OEL, who is a fantastic person first and foremost.
“The Twitter experts are not shy,” said Pettersson. “If you have a bad match, it’s easy to write crap about it. I suffered with him. He came in on a bigger contract and people don’t think he’s performing as well as they’d hoped… I think he played well, but it’s easy for people to just see the negative in it instead of seeing that is a person who tries to do his best.”
He later discussed the Canucks’ team heading into next season.
“I think we have a good core and good young players,” said Pettersson. “We brought in [Andrei] Kuzmenko and [Ilya] Mikheyev and have made good signings this summer of free agents. I think we have a slightly wider squad now and [Thatcher] Demko knows we are good in goal.”
I’m not sure if the translation was great on that last quote, to be honest. But you get the gist of it.
He later spoke about the positives that the team experienced when new coach Rick Tocchet came in.
“The way we played at the end of the season when the coaching change came, then I think we got the game together more,” said Pettersson. “Our defence improved and we didn’t have to score five goals to win but could win 2-1 sometimes which we didn’t do before. We need to become more complete as a team and more difficult to play, more difficult to score on. I saw some stats that we were in the top ten in points, or at least in the playoffs, at the end of the season. It’s sad that it came too late, but it also makes you hopeful for what’s to come.”
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