Washington Capitals forward Carl Hagelin is getting into the construction business in his hometown of Nykvarn, Sweden. Swedish newspaper Länstidningen is reporting that he’s in the process of building a padel center.
This might need some explanation.
First of all, padel? It’s a racket sport originally from Mexico, but today most popular in Spain – and Sweden. Kind of a mix between tennis and squash, it’s played on a court with glass walls. During the pandemic year, it has become immensely popular in Sweden. Everywhere, in every little town, there’s now a padel center.
And I happen to live in Nykvarn, just a few hundred yards from where Hagelin wants to develop his new sporting center. This is a very small town, just outside of Stockholm where just over 11,000 people reside. We have a soccer field and just this year, they finished an indoor sports center mainly built for floorball.
The project will be spearheaded by Carl and his older brother Bobbie and friend Joakim Sjödell-Wiklander. They are forming the company “Bröderna Hagelin Invest” (Translation: “The Hagelin Brothers Invest”) and have signed an agreement of intent, which the city council approved just this week.
“It’s very encouraging to see the brothers, with their huge interest in sports, want to invest in their own community,” Chairman of the city council Gunilla Lindstedt said to Länstidningen.
Speaking to LT’s Mathias Jonsson on Friday, Hagelin talked about his love for his hometown.
“My number one priority is to work with the city of Nykvarn, the city I grew up in and the city I will be living in when I move back home,” Carl said adding “I want to give something back. I think Nykvarn has done a really good job, making investments around sports. When this opportunity arose, I got on board immediately.”
The plans began back when Hagelin brought back the Stanley Cup to Nykvarn, back in the spring of 2016. City council chairman Gunilla Lindstedt confirms the talk has been going on for some time.
“The administration has discussed this with the Hagelin brothers for a long period of time. Now we’re talking about the area around Furuborg, where we want different kinds of sports centers. We love the interest from private actors, the city doesn’t have to do it all on its own.”
While padel is the new folk sport in Sweden, the trio of investors all have a background in hockey. Carl obviously had the best career, but his his brother Bobbie and their friend Joakim have all played. At this point, Nykvarn doesn’t have a hockey rink at all. When the weather is cold enough – like this week, we had -5.8 F, the city uses the gravel soccer fields at a couple of playgrounds to make ice ponds. Carl Hagelin plans to change that.
“It would be fun to build an indoor rink too,” Hagelin said. “Nykvarn will need one in the future. There’s a lot of possibilities and it’s fun being a part of making the area grow and keep being a part of it when I get back home.”
Headline photo: Elizabeth Kong/RMNB
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