Erik Karlsson Reveals Why He Chose Pittsburgh Over Everyone Else

Tyler Ball
August 9, 2023  (8:18 PM)

The Pittsburgh Penguins were locked in on acquiring Erik Karlsson from the moment he was available. The process played out mostly behind closed doors without a whole lot of insight into who had the edge in getting him. Teams like Toronto and Carolina were also heavily involved. During his introductory press conference on Wednesday Karlsson gave some insight into his side of the story.

Karlsson Wanted To Be In Pittsburgh

Karlsson would go on to explain that he did not give San Jose a list of preferred destinations off the bat. Once Pittsburgh became an option though he did let San Jose know to focus on those negotiations over others.
Erik Karlsson said he didn't give the Sharks a shortlist or preferred destination. Once the ball started rolling after playoffs and Pittsburgh got involved, I was very excited about the opportunity to have a chance to go somewhere where I could be on a team who's contending.

He also mentions that one key factor separated the Penguins from the rest of the list of teams. That factor was the ability to win the Stanley Cup as Karlsson felt they were set up the best to do so.
Erik Karlsson: (Winning the Cup), it's always been the ultimate drive. I think for myself, I like to play the important games and be on successful teams and have success collectively as a group...

Karlsson Excited For New Opportunities

Karlsson says he is excited for the new adventure and is excited to step into a group he has lost to on several occasions before. Believing that this core still has enough left in them to win championships.
Erik Karlsson: "...I've played against Pittsburgh many times and lost to them a few times when they went on to win the ultimate prize. That's something they know how to do here, and the players that they've had here for a long time are still really good players..."

Lastly, Karlsson mentions how excited he is to learn from everyone in the organization. This will be the first time Karlsson will step into a locker room where several of the players will have more Stanley Cups and accolades than he does.
Erik Karlsson: "...I'm excited to step into that group and learn a lot of things, and hopefully bring some new things and help them become even better."

He believes he has another level he can get to which is a scary thought considering how incredible Karlsson was last year. If Kyle Dubas and the Penguins organization can get even more out of Karlsson than he has given before the Penguins could very likely be lifting a Stanley Cup Trophy in the near future.
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Erik Karlsson Reveals Why He Chose Pittsburgh Over Everyone Else

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