Young Lindholm Reflects on His NHL Debut Last Sunday

Wednesday, 10.9.2013 / 1:52 PM PT / News
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Young Lindholm Reflects on His NHL Debut Last Sunday
Defenseman Hampus Lindholm reflects on making his NHL debut at the age of 19 last Sunday in Winnipeg.
"That’s just how I am as a person. I never get that nervous playing hockey. I would get more nervous if the guys told me to go up on stage and sing a song. But I’ve been playing hockey for a while. You know what you can do out there, and you know your limits. Of course you get butterflies before the game, but I mostly play better when it’s a big game, so I just enjoy it."
By Adam Brady

Sunday night in Winnipeg was all about Teemu Selanne, as the Ducks legend made a celebrated final visit to the city where his NHL career began 21 years ago.

But what might have been lost in the hubbub of one of many milestone moments that will come with Selanne’s farewell season was the career birth of a Ducks teammate who is 24 years younger than Selanne.

Defenseman Hampus Lindholm, whom the Ducks took with the sixth overall pick in the 2012 NHL draft, made his debut that night against the Jets. And he hardly looked like a player who won’t turn 20 until next January.

“Hampus did really good,” said Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau. “We were a little nervous for him but I thought he handled it like a pro. He can skate. He was making the right plays. I was really happy with his game.”

In his relatively short time in Anaheim, Lindholm appears just as composed outside the rink as he does in it. The native of Helsingborg, Sweden is soft-spoken but sharp, and remained that way after a Wednesday practice in which he reflected on his NHL debut.

Were you nervous at all playing that game?
I really wasn’t. That’s just how I am as a person. I never get that nervous playing hockey. I would get more nervous if the guys told me to go up on stage and sing a song. But I’ve been playing hockey for a while. You know what you can do out there, and you know your limits. Of course you get butterflies before the game, but I mostly play better when it’s a big game, so I just enjoy it. I just go out there and have fun, play my game and play as hard as I can. I can’t do much more than that.

Why do you think you play better in games like that?
I would say every player would like big situations more. If you have a full crowd and they scream loudly and cheer for you, it’s a fun time to play. The game is on the line. That’s the game you want to play. It’s such a special feeling that you can’t really describe it. You just get into the game much easier

"I don’t take anything for granted though. I know I have to work my [rear] off to stay here. These guys are such great athletes on ice and great guys off ice, and I’m just trying to do my best to show that I want to stay here."
What makes you more nervous, playing in your first NHL game or hitting a tee shot yesterday at the Ducks golf tournament?
The tee shot, for sure [laughs].

Does it blow your mind at all that you’re a 19-year-old playing hockey at this level?
Of course. I don’t take anything for granted though. I know I have to work my [rear] off to stay here. These guys are such great athletes on ice and great guys off ice, and I’m just trying to do my best to show that I want to stay here.

Who did you hear from after the game?
I talk to my parents every day, I would say. Or at least my dad. He and my mom are always watching my games back home in Sweden. I sent a text to my dad to tell him I was playing, and they were up at around 4 a.m. watching the game. My dad told me in the third period his eyes started to close a little bit.

You’ve been paired with Francois Beauchemin on defense. Has that helped you?
I couldn’t ask for a better partner. He’s so solid, so smart out there, always in the right spots. If you make a small mistake, he’s going to be in the right position. He’s always there helping you and talking and stuff. He’s making it easier for me out there, and I’m trying to make it easy for him.



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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 76 47 22 7 222 213 101
2 NSH 75 46 21 8 214 180 100
3 STL 74 46 21 7 226 182 99
4 CHI 73 44 23 6 207 167 94
5 MIN 74 42 25 7 211 183 91
6 VAN 74 43 27 4 212 199 90
7 WPG 75 39 24 12 212 197 90
8 LAK 74 37 23 14 199 184 88
9 CGY 74 40 27 7 217 195 87
10 DAL 74 36 28 10 232 236 82
11 SJS 74 36 30 8 207 210 80
12 COL 74 34 28 12 200 206 80
13 EDM 74 21 40 13 177 254 55
14 ARI 75 23 44 8 158 249 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 73 24 44 14 68
C. Perry 61 32 20 16 52
R. Kesler 76 19 27 -5 46
S. Vatanen 61 12 25 7 37
J. Silfverberg 75 12 23 11 35
P. Maroon 67 9 24 -4 33
C. Fowler 74 7 26 3 33
H. Lindholm 73 7 26 22 33
J. Wisniewski 64 8 24 -14 32
M. Beleskey 62 22 9 14 31
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 32 11 5 .913 2.41
J. Gibson 12 7 0 .914 2.65

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