Paajarvi, a 6-foot-3, 208-pound native of Norrkoping, Sweden, is a 2009 first-round draft pick (10th overall) of the Oilers.
We sat down with Paajarvi during Training Camp to discuss a variety of topics, including the trade, what he brings to the Blues and the type of music on his iPod. Below is the complete Q&A.
STLOUISBLUES.COM: Your trade to St. Louis must have come as a surprise. What was your reaction to the news?
MAGNUS PAAJARVI: It was shocking, but the more I thought about it, the more it grew on me. I’m coming to a contender team, so it’s very exciting and inspiring. Trust me, there was expectations in Edmonton too with all the hype and the young talent. But we talked about getting to the playoffs in Edmonton, and here we talk about the Cup. It’s a little bit different, it’s two stages of two teams. It’s very exciting to be on a contender.
BLUES: You’ve been here a few weeks. What are your initial reactions to St. Louis and the Blues?
MP: It’s a very disciplined team. Very strict, but a very hard working team. The city of St. Louis is very nice. It’s a little bit different than Europe or Edmonton, but it’s very nice. The weather is nice now and I can’t complain.
BLUES: It’s been talked about quite a bit, but you showed great chemistry with Patrik Berglund at the World Championships. What made you guys click?
MP: You can’t really explain chemistry, I guess. That World Championships was really good except the last period of the finals. Everything was going really well. With Berglund, it was very nice and we found some chemistry, we scored a couple points and huge goals. It was really fun for those two weeks.
BLUES: How would you describe your game to Blues fans? What type of player can they expect?
MP: Skater. Both offensive and defensively. I want to get to the net and create some chaos and score some goals.
BLUES: How would you say you fit in Ken Hitchcock’s system? Is his style a good fit for your game?
MP: Absolutely, yeah. It’s very hard. He goes as hard offensively as defensively, and you have to be a good skater to be in this system, so it suits me well.
BLUES:From your perspective, what are your team expectations for this year?
MP: We haven’t gone through that yet, but we’re definitely up there. Everybody’s talking about the Cup. We want the Cup.
BLUES: What kind of music is on your iPod right now?
BLUES: Why did you choose No. 56?
MP: Because of my dad. That’s his birth number.
BLUES: What’s a fun fact nobody knows about you?
MP: I’m very very good at squash. I play a lot of that in the summer.
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