And A Child Shall Lead Them……..

So I am stuck in JFK airport in New York for another two hours so, while I don’t have time to do the full Prague post I want to do, I want to post something while it’s fresh in my mind.

Even if there were no Czech love involved in my trip (which OMG there totally was), it was worth the time and money for Oliver Ekman-Larsson.

It was sick to be able to see him play in his first ever regular season NHL game.  His Dad, Uncle, and Grandparents were in the house from Sweden to see it too and how incredibly special it must have been for them to see all the hard work pay off and Oliver make his debut.

So let’s break down how the kid is doing.

Game 1:  Time on ice:  23:47.  THE FREAKING 19 YEAR OLD ROOKIE PLAYED ALMOST 24 MINUTES IN THE GAME  AND THAT WAS HIGHEST ON THE WHOLE TEAM.  He played 3:26 of time on the penalty kill, including the 5 on 3.  He trailed only Aucoin in PK time.  IN HIS FIRST GAME EVER!  He also had 1 shot, 3 hits and 2 blocked shots.

The stats don’t really demonstrate how sick this kid is with the puck.  He has great control, swoops around defenders into the zone and looks calm.

After playing 24 minutes I know you're tired but, OPEN YOUR EYES OLIVER!! WAKE UP!!! Someone get the kid a Coke!

Game 2:  A bit more rough.  His time on ice was 18:38 and his time on penalty kill was 5:15, which was a minute more than anyone else.  He had three shots in the game.    It’s still a huge chunk of time for a rookie.  He isn’t overly physical but he uses his body well and is strong enough to push people out of Bryz’s way.

Did he have some rough turnovers and passes?  Yes.  One lead to a goal.  But, the rest of the team played like crap so we are not going to hang this loss on the kid.  He hasn’t had any stupid penalties, he kills off penalties pretty much more than anyone else, and some veterans need to be showing up before we start talking crap about the kid.

Trust me, anyone that is concerned just has to see him play in person.  His game away from the puck isn’t seen on TV.  And he’s 19.  And it was his first two games.  And his family was there.  And if you want to talk badly about him, I’ll fight you in the parking lot, ok?

There is a reason that GMDM told the fans in Prague that OEL was playing for sure and that Lepisto/Schlemko would be fighting for the 6th spot.  This isn’t an experiment.  This isn’t a test.  This isn’t a trial run.  Oliver is the real deal.  He is our future, starting right now.

I am so completely excited for how great of a player he is going to become over the course of his rookie year.   Any guesses on how long  before I get my second OEL jersey?  Anyone?

…… And a child shall lead them.

It's alright kid, you're gonna wow them on Saturday.

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One Response to And A Child Shall Lead Them……..

  1. Daniel says:

    Sorry I have to say that som of your info isn’t true. Olivers dad wasn’t there, the guy you talked to was his uncle Tobias. After you talked to Tobias the rest of his “entourage” came. So even his mom was there just so you know. We were 3 friends and his oter grandparents too, Just a pointer 😉 But we’re reading your blog just so you know and think you’re doing a great job making a picture for the rest of us how he’s got it “over there”.

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