Q&A: New Ducks Winger Jakob Silfverberg
Friday, 07.19.2013 / 1:25 PM PT / News
|"I did so much last year and coming into this year I felt I would do even more. And now playing with another team and other players and another coach, it’s going to be a good experience. I’m very excited."|
Much of the focus on the Ducks’ prominent trade with Ottawa earlier this month has been on Bobby Ryan leaving after five seasons in Anaheim. But not enough has been on what the Ducks got back in the deal, which included – along with forward, Stefan Noesen and a first-round pick in 2014 – promising young right winger Jakob Silfverberg.
The 22-year-old Silfverberg had a strong rookie campaign in Ottawa this past season, playing in all 48 games while scoring 10 goals and chipping in nine assists. Drafted by the Sens in the second round (39th overall) in 2009, Silfverberg represented his home country of Sweden five times, winning medals at the 2010 World Junior Championship (bronze) and the 2011 World Championship (silver). He was a teammate of Ducks goalie Viktor Fasth at the 2011 and 2012 Worlds.
Two seasons ago with Brynas of the Swedish Elite League, Silfverberg was named MVP for both the regular season and playoffs, scoring 24-30=54 points in 49 regular season games.
He has already been projected as a top-six forward by the guy who got him – Ducks Executive Vice President and General Manager Bob Murray, who called Silfverberg, “a very smart hockey player, great shot. He scores goals and can make plays, and he’s very good defensively. We really like him and have for a few years.”
Silfverberg is spending the summer in his hometown of Gävle, Sweden, where he talked about the trade and starting anew with the Ducks.
|On his rookie season: "Looking back on it, I’m very happy about it and I’m satisfied. I got to play a lot of minutes, and I got to play some important minutes too. That’s when you learn, and I think it was a great experience."|
Silfverberg: It’s more like Ja-kub. It doesn’t really matter to me, but as long as people are asking, I keep saying “Ja-kub.”
[Hear him pronounce it]:
Q: How did you hear about the trade?
First of all, I had a couple of calls from the Ontario area calling me, and I didn’t have those numbers in my Swedish phone. So I didn’t pick up the calls at first, but once I realized who was calling, I started thinking. About five minutes after that, my agent called and told me about it.
What was your reaction?
I was a bit confused at first because you see it happen but you don’t really think it could happen to you. It’s a big thing. I did so much last year and coming into this year I felt I would do even more. And now playing with another team and other players and another coach, it’s going to be a good experience. I’m very excited.
How much do you know about the Ducks?
Well, I haven’t gotten to play against them since we only played the East last year. And I’ve never really seen them play because in Sweden their games come on TV too late. But I’ve seen their roster and it’s a good mix between young and older. It looks really good.
Have you ever been to California before?
[Laughs] No, I haven’t. I know it’s going to be nice, from what I’ve heard from friends who have traveled there. I talked to Viktor Fasth about it too. From what I’ve heard, it’s just an amazing place to live, so of course I’m very excited about that.
|"I always try to work hard, and that’s the biggest thing about me. I never give up. I love to win. I think the strongest part of my game is I have a pretty quick and accurate and hard shot, and I try to shoot the puck a lot."|
I played two World Championships with him, so I know him pretty well. I spent a lot of time with him, especially when we both played in our first World Championship. It will be good to be with someone I know.
How would you assess your rookie season in Ottawa?
Looking back on it, I’m very happy about it and I’m satisfied. I got to play a lot of minutes, and I got to play some important minutes too. That’s when you learn, and I think it was a great experience. You always want to score more goals and help the team more, and be that guy who scores game-winning goals. Other than that, I’m very satisfied and I think I learned a lot. Coming into this season, I’m very excited.
What’s your plan for the rest of the summer?
I usually just take it week by week. I’ll be in Sweden for the rest of the summer, and I’ll probably be leaving here the beginning of September for training camp.
Your father, Jan-Erik played professionally in Sweden for 11 seasons. Was he a big influence on you?
Back then it was a different game, but he’s always been a huge help for me in pushing me to work harder and that kind of stuff. He’s happy for me that it’s been going good. When I grew up, he was a big part of me continuing to work on my game and that kind of stuff.
What would you want Ducks fans to know about you and your game?
I always try to work hard, and that’s the biggest thing about me. I never give up. I love to win. I think the strongest part of my game is I have a pretty quick and accurate and hard shot, and I try to shoot the puck a lot. I love to play the power play and PK, and I’m just a hard-working, two-way forward who loves to shoot.