On Wednesday, Artemi Panarin spoke with media in Columbus for the first time since his trade to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Panarin was traded from the Chicago Blackhawks on June 23 in a deal involving Brandon Saad. Panarin was accompanied by Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalanien as well as his agent and translator, Dan Milstein.
Artemi Panarin Speaks with Media in Columbus
Panarin finally got to put on his new Blue Jackets jersey after numerous jokes on Twitter about not yet owning one. Panarin wears the number 9 with the Jackets.
let me get my own jersey first … https://t.co/WFgkw0nzN2
— Artemi Panarin (@9Artemi) July 18, 2017
Though initially shocked by the trade, Panarin is now ready and excited for a new opportunity with the Blue Jackets.
“With this team, he feels that he’d be able to progress as a player and help the team to win many trophies,” Milstein said, translating for Panarin.
Panarin also feels ready to step into more of a leadership role with the Jackets. “I played with world class players in Chicago and I’ve learned a lot from them,” Panarin said. However, Panarin was quick to dismiss claims that his success in Chicago was largely due to teammates such as Patrick Kane.
“I am used to it and I am not paying attention to it,” Panarin said.
Kekalainen also spoke highly of Panarin. “I think he’ll fit in perfectly with our group,” Kekalainen said, emphasizing that the current Jackets team, one of the youngest in the league, is eager to prove itself.
Panarin also got big laughs from the Columbus media. He joked about boxing Sergei Bobrovsky for the jersey number 72, which belonged to Panarin in Chicago.
But Panarin jokes: “I brought the boxing gloves. That’ll be decided later.” #CBJ
— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) August 30, 2017
Jokes aside, Panarin said that he spoke with Bobrovsky immediately after the trade. The two have competed together for Russia on an international stage in the past, most recently at the 2016 IIHF World Championships.
Panarin also spoke directly to Blue Jackets fans about what they can expect from him in the coming season.
“I am going to bring smiles and good moments for the fans, and lots of goals as well,” Panarin said. “I’ll bring a productive game and a beautiful one as well, so fans will enjoy it.”