HC Dalen’s new forward, and seventh round pick by the Washington Capitals in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, Kristian Röykås Marthinsen will be departing Jönköping, Sweden this Wednesday to participate in the Capitals annual rookie camp. Hockeyasverige.se caught-up with the left winger prior to his departure to the states. The following is a translation of the interview.
The NHL rookie camps are starting up this week. It doesn’t come to the ordinary that a player from Hockeyettan is attending one of those camps. But this year new HC Dalen forward Kristian Röykås Marthinsen will be among the ranks when the prospects of the Washington Capitals gather for the upcoming NHL season.
In 2017, Norwegian Kristian Röykås Marthinsen was selected by the Washington Capitals in the seventh round. On Wednesday he is heading across the pond to participate in the Capitals rookie camp. It’s not the first time that he has attended the camp, and last year he was cut late before the season.
I was extra nervous the first time maybe, but I have some friends and got to know the staff and the people around the team. So, I’m more comfortable, but it’s still a bit nerveracking going over, the forward says to hockeysverige.se with a smile.
A tournament is also on the schedule, where Washington will play Nashville, Tampa Bay and Carolina.
The Norwegian turned 20 last week, and earlier this summer he signed with HC Dalen in the swedish third division. It was decided early this spring that he should attend the camp, he says. Something that has laid ground to a few chirps from the new team mates in Norrahammar, just outside of Jönköping.
There was talk about fines when I leave the team, we’ll see how it tunrs out, he says laughing.
Dalen is coached by former great Pelle Gustafsson and he is very fond of the opportunity given to his player.
It’s very fun. It’s a huge thing to go over to the rookie-camp and I told him that he must return afterwards, that’s the premise for him going, he says to hockeysverige.se.
We have gotten used to that. NHL teams have a plan for their prospects and scouts and other staff are engaged in the players development, even on this side of the Atlantic.
Pelle Gustafsson has been in contact with Washington.
I have talked with their chief scout and they will visit us here in October or November. So I have had that contact. We haven’t talked about what Kristian needs to improve, but that will probably come once they visit.
Kristian Röykås Marthinsen has Lörenskog as a native club. In 2015 he moved to Sweden, and signed with Almtuna. He stayed with the Uppsala club until the spring of 2018 before he moved over to play in Canada in the WHL.
It’s a whole other kind of hockey over there. It was a transition for me to go over there trying to adjust to their game and play, the forward says to hockeysverige.se
But it has also been a transition to return to Europe.
I have felt it the first games that you have a lot more of time and space, but I have still sent away pucks that I probably would have had time to find better alternatives with. It will be a transition, but I will probably adjust quickly. Find solutions instead of just sending away pucks. In America it’s all about sending the puck forward all the time.
But how is it that a drafted player, who spent last season in North America, now is residing in Hockeyettan? One answer to the question is that his older brother Andreas Röykås Marthinsen, who also plays for HC Dalen. But it’s not the only answer.
I could have spent another season as an overage player in Saskatoon, but it’s tough when you are 20 and a foreign player. They have two spots for foreigners and three for 20-year olds. I didn’t get a answer from them early enough. I tried to be patient, but I didn’t get any answers.
It turned out to be nothing and then I started looking for a team in Europe and Sweden. When Dalen came up as an option, I felt it was a good alternative, because I need to get into seniorhockey and Sweden feels like home.
Was there interest from other clubs?
There wasn’t any major interest because they look for guys with experience and so on. I have walked a different path you can say, because I turned out SuperElit when I got to Almtuna. Since then I’ve had agents who wanted me to take it easy. I wanted to leave Almtuna earlier the last year, but then I got drafted to the WHL.
Interview by Henrik Skoglund for HockeySverige.se
Translated by Jesper Svensson