The Ottawa Senators have a second confirmed participant in this year's Olympic games as Erik Karlsson was named to Team Sweden on Tuesday. Teammates Robin Lehner and Mika Zibanejad were not included on the final roster, though are still eligible in the event of an injury.
Karlsson will be making the trip to his first Olympics in 2014 after representing Sweden in a pair of World Championships, recording 11 points in 18 games with the senior national team since making the leap to the NHL in 2009. This season he sits second in NHL scoring amongst defencemen with 39 points which also puts him first among Senators.
Team Sweden kicks off their campaign for gold on February 12 against Milan Michalek and the Czech Republic.
Here's what Erik had to say about his selection...
On his selection to the Swedish Olympic team:
Obviously very proud and something that I’ve been looking forward to for a long time and you know, every since you were a kid you’ve been dreaming about this day and it’s going to be a great experience and hopefully be something good for us.
On when he found out and how they let him know:
I found out a couple of days ago, they called me and said I was in, just waiting for this day for it to be official and you know it’s nice that it’s out now and can start focusing on the remainder of the games here. It’s in a month and you know it’s something you look forward to and hopefully I can stay healthy and do well for the remainder of the games here in the NHL and go into the Olympics with good confidence.
On the Swedish team’s chances in Sochi:
I think we have a great team, we have a lot of good players, and so does every other team I think, it’s so close now and it’s not about two or three teams any more it’s about five or six. It’s going to be a battle, especially with the travel and everything, but it’s the same conditions for everyone and we have to make sure that we get it going for the first game against the Czechs.
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