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Ice cold Eriksson facing new challenge

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Skellefteå goalie coach Stefan Ladhe shares his thoughts on Joacim Eriksson and the current situation the young goaltender is in.

"He's a great guy, it's very nice to get to work with him. He's a skilled goalie with a great attitude and that's a very important thing to have, especially for a goalie. Jocke won't become nervous if he has a big challenge ahead of him. He's ice cold."

Ladhe is a little surprised at how quickly Eriksson has developed. Eriksson became the starting goalie for Leksand last season and outplayed veteran goalie Timo Leinonen to take the job.

"I probably didn't expect it to happen so quickly. But I knew what caliber of a goalie Jocke is and how much potential he has because of his time with the junior national teams earlier. It was an achievement for him; he showed that he was better than Timo, so he earned the job."

Ladhe is confident in Eriksson's ability to repeat his success at a higher level this season.

"He showed as a rookie in the Allsvenskan what he can do and I'm convinced that he will do the same in the Elitserien. If he keeps developing like he has, there is no question that he's going to play in the Elitserien."

Ladhe doesn't expect it to be easy for Eriksson in Skellefteå where the young goalie has to battle with Andreas Hadelöv, 35, for ice time, but notes that Eriksson should get his chance.

"Skellefteå has a very good goalie tandem. I talked with Jocke after the season in Leksand and thought that he should think about what to do next. The Philadelphia Flyers organization was also an option for him. Skellefteå may not seem like a very good place for Jocke's development since they have Hadelöv who has been good there for many years, so you might wonder how many games Jocke will get. But from what I understand, Skellefteå will get a little younger and bring Jocke in and let both goalies play about as much."

Source: VF