Rebels defenceman Christoffer Sedoff has been playing like a man on a mission this season since returning to Red Deer.
The 20-year-old from Helsinki, Finland has contributed 11 assists in just nine games and is currently riding a six-game points streak.
Sedoff said on Thursday he thought his play so far this season has been good and that the success of the team certainly helps.
“It definitely helps when the team is playing good and you can show yourself a little bit more out there,” he said.
Sedoff is also tied for third in the league in assists and is one of two defencemen in the top five. It’s no question that passing the puck is one of the six-foot-onw, 195-pound defenceman’s strengths.
“It’s one of my biggest assets in my game and my skating. They complement each other with those things together and get a lot of assists just skating up ice and making plays,” he added.
Head coach Steve Konowalchuk said Sedoff plays the game the right way every game and competes hard every practice.
“He drives the practice pace and you see how he can drive the pace of the game out there on both ends of the ice. I’m not surprised he’s getting the assists he’s a really good defenceman and a really good leader for us,” Konowalchuk explained.
With Sedoff’s veteran presence the Rebels have improved to 11-0 and are just one of two remaining undefeated teams in the Western Hockey League. He explained the team has been very strong and everyone has played a specific role on the squad. He added they’re focused on one game at a time and try not to look too far ahead.
The team as a whole he said is a close group and the defensive core is strong. He believes they can go up against any team in the league with their defensive group and be successful.
“I’ve taken a bigger role since last year just leading the team and just showing the way on and off the ice,” he said adding there is not many differences with this team compared to last year. “We have the same end goal and same coaching staff so there’s not too much of a difference.”
Before he returned to Red Deer Sedoff was invited to the Calgary Flames training camp of the National Hockey League after he went undrafted once again in this year’s draft.
He explained it was a great experience just to see how they work and the day-to-day operations of being a professional athlete. Despite that, he hoped to have been at camp longer and maybe even earn a contract.
“I just looked at it as a good thing coming back here, playing a lot, and getting a good opportunity to show the NHL teams,” Sedoff said.
Once he finished his short stint in Calgary Sedoff could have returned to his home country and played there but instead, he wanted to stay in North America and play for the Rebels.
“That was my plan from the get-go. If I didn’t get signed to play in the American Hockey League I’d come back to Red Deer for the year,” he added.
He doesn’t hold any animosity toward the Flames or any other NHL team that didn’t give him a chance but as a result, Sedoff has played with a chip on his shoulder.
“Just show all the teams and staff that I’m good enough and maybe I’ll get a chance at some point,” Sedoff said.