It is a tired and happy Gustav Lindström that is about to go on the bus that will take him and this teammates from Frölunda through the streets of Gothenburg for the victory parade and celebration. “It has been a great season, I came to Frölunda to maximise my development and I have done just that. I wanted to win, we have won every tournament we have entered so I have achieved that goal as well” Frölunda won the Champions Hockey League in February and more-recently the LeMat Trophy as the winner of the playoffs in Sweden, however Lindström didn’t get a lot of ice time in the playoffs because if the injury he suffered at the end of January when he sprained his MCL in a game against Örebro in SHL.
“I played fourth most in the team during the regular season (18:00 TOI/GP), it was only Ryan Lasch, Jonathan Sigalet and Chay Genoway that played more than me. The coach gave me a lot of trust before the injury. I took six week to fully recover, and the team played well when I was out. It is tough for the coaches to change a team that plays well and wins. I did my best to grab a spot, but other players stepped up their game too. I think I played well when I got the chance to play, but since everyone else played well too, it was tough to break into the team. I understand that the coaches can’t change the team either, and this just proves they were right [as Frölunda won the championship]”.
Lindstöm has grown up as a Djurgården fan, his uncle is former NHL and Djurgården player Marcus Ragnarsson, something that made it special to win the championship at Djurgårdens arena in Stockholm. “I have grown up in those stands, and it was extra special to win there, especially considering the ties my family has to Djurgården”. Lindström actually has a Djurgården tattoo on his forearm, something that has been a big thing in Swedish media during the final.
Lindström has clearly benefited from this time in one of Europe’s top clubs, having won two titles in the span of a couple of months. It is not clear what the future holds for the defender, but the Detroit Red Wings should be happy with the progress Lindström has made over the season.
The parade is about to take off and the fans are lining the streets, however its at the town centre that almost 40,000 people have waited for hours for the chance to celebrate the win with the players. Lindström laughs as he gets on the bus and says “This makes it all worth it”.