Erik Karlsson on his childhood and his life now

Karlsson had some great quotes ahead of the World Cup of Hockey

Erik Karlsson is off to play for Team Sweden in the World Cup of Hockey, giving one last media appearance in Ottawa before heading to team practices in Toronto. But he also gave an interview to Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet that gave a different side of him, including how he “owned” a car at age 12, and who’s to blame for his designer lifestyle. Here are some of the best quotes:

ON BEING GOALIE: “When I was 10, I wanted to be the goalkeeper. But Dad didn’t think so. I remember on practice, he came in from the blueline and hit a slapshot right into my chest. I thought I would pass out. I didn’t want to be in goal anymore. It might not be the best parenting, but it worked.”

ON HIS HOMETOWN OF LANDSBRO: “There isn’t much in the village. A grocery store and a pizzeria. It has an awesome pizza called the Sweden Special with raw onions and kebab sauce. Otherwise, there’s not much else but an ice rink.”

ON SCHOOL: “I had a lot of energy and was no angel. I had trouble sitting still and couldn’t listen for long. I could read for only 10 minutes at a time [...] In hockey, I wanted to be the best, but I didn’t have the same drive in school.”

ON OWNING A CAR AT AGE 12: “[My father] said he could shoot over 170 km/h. I did not believe him, so I made a bet. I said he couldn’t shoot that hard, and if he didn’t, I would get our Ford Escort (a scrap car) so I could drive it around the yard. Naturally, he couldn’t shoot that hard.” So, as the article says, with the help of a car seat and his dad, ‘Hawk’, he could drive the car. “A little while later, I backed into something in our yard and the car broke down. But it was fun while it lasted.”

ON DANIEL ALFREDSSON: “He’s one of my best friends. We are so different, brought up in different generations, but we’re close. Just being close to him has made me a better person and player [...] We do not agree on everything [...] Once we began to discuss talent development and skill, and felt different. Early on, I used to give up in discussions, but this one lasted over a year. Now we can never talk about it.”

ON TEAM SWEDEN AT THE WORLD CUP OF HOCKEY: “We have to peak at the right time. In the semis and finals, we must all be there and play well. We do not have to play in any particular way. If we play our game, we can go all the way.”

ON HIS LIFE NOW: “I am satisfied with my life. Everything is fine now and I feel comfortable with my girlfriend. Everything is easier when life is going well. I like the good things in life. I used to just wear boots, but now it’s Dolce and Gabbana. It’s [SHL hockey player Fredrik] ‘Freddan’ Pettersson’s fault, he led me into this style.”


(s/t to Patrik B of Habs Eyes on the Prize for pointing out the story and helping with translation)

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