Last week I mentioned how Sam was interviewed and photographed for the magazine for his hockey league, the SM-Liiga. Once a year the magazine does a season preview. They have a few pages on each team in the league and pick one or two players from each team to focus on for each team's section of the magazine. I do not know if I have mentioned before but Sam has a REALLY fast shot and they chose him and focused on his shot for most of his interview, that is also why he is posing next to a cannon in the pictures.
I finally took the time to translate the article the very best I could, Finnish does not translate online very well to English and often you have to guess about what point they are trying to get across. Any of my comments have a ( - Cacilie), they are to hopefully help to understand what they are talking about.
He is a man cannon.
Few players in the world have a shot as hard as SaiPan bomber Sam Lofquist. (His team is SaiPa - Cacilie)
Last spring SaiPa did well and had a great year financially with 760,000 Euro profit after last season, which is fantastic.
Sam Lofquist was nicknamed a name that represents Swedish society, by his Oskarsham Coach, Fredrik Soderstrom. This nickname is Caviar Sam. (Nicknamed after a tube of caviar that is very popular is Sweden - Kalles Kaviar - which features a picture of a blond boy who many thought looked like a younger version of Sam - Cacilie)
The image on this Swedish delicacies resemblance to the United States Sam's face is evident.
One might ask, did he get the nickname because he is like Caviar?
"No, No. I play with energy, passion, and if necessary I play rough/hard." - 24 year old Lofquist stresses
"That nickname is undoubtably apt because I have been told many times that I have a resemblance to the character on the tube." - Sam Lofquist
"I never learned to enjoy Kalles Caviar. I think it is hard to enjoy for people who have not had it growing up to acquire a taste for it." - Sam Lofquist
(They actually have hilarious commercials for Kalles Caviar going to other countries and serving it to locals and they always hate it. Here is a link to one that took place in Tokyo - Cacilie)
Lofquist has a special skill set. He shoots at a speed many can not even reach in their car he can blast on the ice.
The American shot a record last winter in Sweden. They officially measured/tested Sam Lofquist's shot and timed it at 170km/hr. The only one faster is Zdeno Chara who made a record shot of 175km/hr in 2012, in the NHL all starts competition. Aleksandr Ryanzantsev according to Russian radar shot 183km/hr.
"I am able to shoot directly and supply even more power when the puck is not stationary. When the puck is moving towards me and I'm moving towards it, the shot gets even harder." - Sam Lofquist
Would be interesting to know how hard the shot of Lofquist is in a match!
The American has skills, they appear to be some kind of gift. However it is not as if he was dropped down with this shot by a stork.
"I have developed the skills/gift through endless training. Growing up I would often shoot a thousand times a day. No exaggeration. Now the shot is a big part of my game. Using my strength in my shot is really fun." - Sam Lofquist
Lofquist says he inherited and learned his work ethics from his father. His father played in the NFL for the Minnesota Vikings. He played a very tough position.
"I asked my father at age three if I may start playing hockey. My father denied me, because the game of hockey was not the sport he wanted to see. Fortunately I also asked my mother, she game me permission immediately. " - Sam Lofquist
Lofquist moves and plays offensively as a defenceman and helps to score. It depends on how many of the shots will go straight into the goal and the number of other places it will hit.
First there needs to be a situation which a shot can be made. If the puck gets to the goal and it does not go in initially, hopefully the goalkeeper will be in a challenging position from his shot and make it possible for someone else to get the puck into the net.
When the shot is fast and accurate, it is always dangerous. However a hard shot is not terribly useful if it stops along the way. Whether that be by other players on either team, or going past the goal.
Lofquist represented the US in the World Cup for the U18 team. He played three seasons in the Swedish Allsvenskan before he moved to SaiPa. During the 12/13 season he had the most goals of any defenceman in the league with 13 goals. He played one game in the AHL in 2010, and hopes to play in the NHL someday.
His skating and his offense from the defense are his strengths. The ice was much bigger in Sweden with more space. He will have to adapt to the smaller ice here in Finland.
Lofquist strongly believes that he will be able to help SaiPa using his strengths.
"I heard the team is fast, action-packed and puck moving. I suppose that I am in the right place at the right time in my career at this stage." - Sam Lofquist
Only time will tell whether SaiPa is a good fit for Caviar Sam.
This is the video that Sam's team mad last year of his shot being timed.
Once again: this is a very rough translation and I did my best, but it could still be quite off from what Sam really said/the interviewer wrote. This translation is just for fun for friends and family who are curious!