With the addition of two Finnish goaltenders and a Swedish defenseman Oscar Klefbom to the list of Edmonton Oilers' prospects there was never a time that I wished friend to Copper & Blue and myself, Lance McFadzen was around. Thankfully, Lance is able to work his translating magic on more than just print and has found a video on Kelfbom to add to our knowledge of the young player.
A video in Lance's words is "much harder to do than print articles." This video is from last December when Klefbom first cracked the line up of Färjestad FBK. Here is what Lance had to say about this:
That is Oskar Klefbom picking up pucks after practice.
"The youngest guy at practice is the puck boy, and in Färjestad that's Oskar Klefbom."
"Yes" Klefbom laughs, "but it's nothing."
The interviewer mentions that there was one puck in particular that he wanted to collect, and that was from his first Elite League goal.
"Yes, it was really cool. I had some luck. I was a little surprised to get my first goal so soon, but it was really cool."
The interviewer asks Klefbom about his new defence partner, Sanny Lindström.
Afterwards, the interviewer asks Lindström what it is like to play with Klefbom.
Lindström says Klefbom certainly has talent. He is a very hard worker, has a good head for the game. He is a good listener, and quite coachable. He tries to learn something from every other defenceman on the team, but particularly from Leffe (Leif Carlsson), the assistant coach who handles defence. When asked what Lindström tries to teach to Klefbom, he says he tries to get him to just slow things down, talk to each other a lot. When Lindström started out in Huddinge, he had an older player to guide him and it helped a lot. So, he's trying to do that same thing for Klefbom. In the last match, Klefbom had good instincts on the ice and was very sharp out there. He's very easy to play with.
The interviewer then asks Klefbom to describe himself. He says a big, mobile, D-man. Good passer, with a really good shot. The interviewer mentions being captain of the national team and Klefbom says yes, that was good fortune. He doesn't know about next year but he would just see what happens. When asked if he had planned on playing in the Elite League this soon, he says absolutely not. Right now, he's just taking it game by game.
Back to Lindström, who is asks what he sees ahead in Klefbom's development. Lindström says that tough to say. He's got a good head on his shoulders and lots of talent. He could really go far. He has both feet on the ground and the team trusts him.
The interviewer than asks Lindström about what it's like for a player to follow the dream of playing in the NHL.
Lindström says that is a very hard thing to say. A lot depends on the size of the city the young player is going to, and if he is going directly to the NHL from the Allsvenskan, which can be a huge adjustment. For him, going to New Jersey was easier because he had secured a place in the Elite League first. He reiterates that it's hard to say, especially when talking about another player. Lindström closes by saying that it's quite an accomplishment for such a young player to step in to the Färjestad lineup and fit in like he has. It's a testament to his character, his obvious leadership capabilities, and his talent. Lindström spoke of another young player who came up early to Timrå, which is another Oilers' prospect Anton Lander. Lander who was strong, fast, and could put passes right on the tape, and that they say the same things about Klefbom too. Lindström also
There you have it folks, a taste of what some of the Swedish hockey system has to say about Klefbom. I know I have said this before, but what a treat it is to have the internet sometimes. With the internet and some multi-lingual friends the world becomes just a little bit smaller.
With the signing of another Swede in Klefbom, Lance went digging for information wherever he could. When he checked the FBK website to see if they had anything on Klefbom, here is what he found. Klefbom said he was incredibly relieved to be picked in the first round. He felt like 50kg had been lifted from his shoulders when the Oilers called his name. He confirmed he will stay with FBK for next season, but he admits it was a long held dream to be picked in the first round. Interestingly, he was asked if he is prepared to fight if he is forced to in the NHL. He simply said he knows that day is coming and he will try and be prepared. This is interesting because that is exactly what he told the media scrum. There looked to be some Finnish media in the crowd, but it appears that there were Swedes among us too. Again, I wish that I had had Lance there to help me speak to some of them, maybe make a connection for this coming season.
No matter, I'm sure that with the work of Lance and Martin Lundén (Swedish Oil by dohfOs) we will have learn some interesting things this year.