It’s been four months since the NHL season came to a halt and players returned back to their home countries. Carl Hagelin, who recently returned to Washington DC for the start of the 24-team playoffs, is ready to get back on the ice. Though, the more exciting times might be happening at home.
Hagelin’s wife, Erica, is currently pregnant with the couple’s second child. Their first born, a daughter named Blanche, turned two in April.
Hagelin announced the news in a Swedish language interview with lt.se’s Jacob Sjölin.
“Being away from the family is going to be the hardest part,” Hagelin shared. A note included with his quote stated, “[And for a special reason – the family is expecting, due in September, which means Carl will have to leave the “bubble”].”
“That’s one of the things the league’s looking at. You’re allowed to leave the “bubble” for personal reasons. But you have to have two negative tests to re-enter, so you’ll miss two or three days,” Hagelin continued.
The NHL has listed a player becoming a father as an “emergency and family situation,” but they must quarantine and test negative four times over a four-day period to return to their team. While Hagelin stated he will miss two or three days, he will have to miss over four days depending on how much paternity leave the league grants.
Hagelin shared that he is fired up for the playoffs and feels very safe with the NHL protocols.
“Now that I’m over here [in the US] I’m feeling fired up for the playoffs. It’s a weird situation. But when it comes to safety you won’t find a safer place than where we’ll be. The way they clean the arena’s and the facilities are top notch. For me, who’s been in Sweden where everything is open, I feel it’s easier to catch the virus in Sweden.”
Sweden did not place mandatory stay at home orders and stores, restaurants, and malls have been open through the whole pandemic.
“The night before the NBA chose to abort their season. You kinda realized the same thing was happening to the NHL too, with the same kind of ownership and values. You didn’t realize the severity of things,” Hagelin said about the day the NHL shut down. “That the whole world was kind of catching the virus. Right there and then we thought we were heading into a break for a few weeks and then get back to it”
Hagelin is hopeful that the Capitals can find their groove again. The Capitals hit some pain points in February, but in the beginning of March were started to turn the corner.
“We were in really good shape right before Christmas before we started to drop off a bit. But it always felt sound, given our good start,” Hagelin said. “It’s important to catch that stride early on. We have a team that’s won before and know what it takes. That’ll make a difference going forward”
Headline photo: Elizabeth Kong
Translation by Magnus Cadelin
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