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Emil Heinemann: Short answer… says a lot

Emil Heinemann: Short answer… says a lot

“Yes. You will see in October.”

A five-word response is rarely satisfactory for a journalist who wants to tell a story. But what is written above, despite its appearance, speaks volumes.

This says a lot about Emil Heinemann’s current state of mind, with just over a month before the Canadiens’ training camp opens.

This short statement from the 21-year-old follows a question that many young hopefuls often politely ignore, preferring not to draw too much attention to themselves: “Do you think you have what it takes to land a full-time job with CH this year?”

We still have to admit that Heinemann, who was acquired by Montreal in 2022 via a Tyler Toffoli trade, has a bunch of arguments to defend his apparent confidence.

The 6-foot-1, 194-pound forward landed (that’s a really good argument!) at Laval last spring from the Lexands (SHL), and broke everything in his first official steps in North America. In 11 regular season games, he scored nine points, including seven goals.

Image source: Laval Rocket

That performance, along with his solid performance during CH’s last training camp (he distinguished himself greatly during the indoor and prep games he participated in before injuring his thumb last October 4), planted seeds in his head, he eventually admitted with a smile, when he mocked length of his initial response.

“I’ve never played an official NHL game, but if you go into the three pre-season games where I was used last year, I’m convinced I have what it takes to not only win a regular spot with Montreal, but also win a regular spot with Montreal, Team help.

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And with those who see themselves playing with Abyssinia, will such a scenario materialize?

“I think I will help every player I play with, no matter who they are.”

This has the advantage of being obvious!

Laval’s secret to instant success

For many European players, a rather long adjustment period is necessary when they land in North America.

Heinemann did not need it.

As we said, the beloved skater, who will turn 22 in November, was crucial when he arrived with the Laval Rocket in March.

How does he explain this?

“The team members and staff really made me feel welcome. I felt at home from the start. The coaches quickly gave me the confidence to put me through the power game.

“Honestly, I think North American playing conditions are perfect for my style of play. I was able to look back at my advanced post-season stats and an observation jumped out in my mind: I had a lot more shots with Laval.” than in Sweden. I think this is a huge advantage of Little Ice: I can use my doses more regularly.

And anyone who has ever seen Heinemann in action knows full well that this famous throw is particularly violent. This is, in fact, one of its greatest strengths.

“After the season, the Rocket coaches were very positive towards me: they told me they really like seeing me out of the law on a regular basis. They like the quality of my shots.”

“I feel strong!”

The Swede’s successful streak with Laval may have given him confidence, but it hasn’t blinded him: He knows that securing a position in the NHL in 2023-2024 takes hard work at all times.

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Heinemann has spared no effort over the past few weeks.

‘I came home for a while, to Leksand, where I really set out. I found myself a little cabin in the woods where I relaxed. I also hunted a lot. But the greater part of the summer was evidently spent in training.

“With my personal conditioning coach, we put together a tough, rigorous schedule where I had to push myself and work really hard. I feel strong now! I want to be as equipped as possible to attack camp in a month.

Image source: courtesy Lexands IF

Interestingly, Heinemann is actually in Quebec. He has been training for a few days at the CN Sports Complex in Brossard with (most notably) Joshua Roy, Logan Miloux, Jaden Strobel, William Trudeau and Riley Kidney.

We feel through his words and actions that he has only one thing on his mind: performance.

What is the biggest difference between Emil Heinemann from the 2023 camp and from last year’s camp?

“I am more mature and more aware of the importance of playing at 200 feet,” answers the main interested party. “I want to work in all situations on the ice. I will also approach whatever comes next by being a little calmer after the experience I gained last year at Laval. I hope it will be available.” I get the chance to play this year in front of the Canadian fans and help the team, if I get the chance…”

At present, everything remains to be done. The competition will be strong and the available positions will be few.

But if anyone might be surprised, it’s Emil Heinemann.

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Talk to the MLS goalkeepers.