Perhaps the only people who aren’t surprised by what Viktor Arvidsson is doing right now in the NHL are people he played alongside or fans who watched him play as a member of the Milwaukee Admirals. In his 87 career games in the AHL he produced 73 points (30 goals, 43 assists). He might not be the biggest player on the ice but it will never stop him from going to the most damaging areas of the ice needed to be a threat.
By now it feels that Arvidsson is a very well documented player. It still seems surreal that the 5’9″ forward from Kusmark, Sweden -for all that he does- went undrafted twice. It wasn’t until his final season with Skellefteå AIK when he made too big of a statement that the NHL had to take notice. He scored 40 points (16 goals, 24 assists) in 50 games during the 2013-14 season that ended in his Skellefteå team successfully defending the SHL Championship they had won the season prior.
When Arvidsson finally found an NHL destination it was with the Nashville Predators who selected him with the 112th overall selection in the fourth round of the 2014 NHL Draft. He was selected in a class that includes: Kevin Fiala, Vladislav Kamenev, Jack Dougherty, and Justin Kirkland. Arvidsson would be the first of that group to make the splash into the AHL ranks and he did it in a big way.
While the 2014-15 season may go down as “that one season where the Admirals missed the playoffs for the first time in twelve seasons” it did offer early flashes for several players that now play their trade in Nashville. Arvidsson is on the top of that list. In his first North American pro playing season he was the leading scorer for the Admirals with 55 points (22 goals, 33 assists) in 70 games. He also did so well that he earned the opportunity to play 6 games in the NHL during that debut season.
In the time after Arvidsson’s one solid season playing in Milwaukee he has grown from NHL regular to someone that the Predators just can’t wait to put back on the ice. What impresses me the most with Arvidsson is that -when you watch him play now versus his time spent in Milwaukee- you see the exact same player. Arvidsson is the most relentless player that I have ever watched, period. He never stops working. And that attitude that people see during a game is performed in the exact same fashion away from the rink. He only wants to keep pushing himself to be the best that he can be.
Cheers to the Nashville Predators and Viktor Arvidsson for providing me the time to hear from our ol’ Milwaukee Admirals player all grown up! Today is a scheduled off-day for the Predators so there won’t be anything gather today. Hopefully Thursday will provide some more.
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