The dab is dead.
At least, it’s dead for Elias Pettersson, who says he won’t be dabbing after anymore goals. The Canucks top prospect busted out the dab as a goal celebration several times for Timrå IK last year, tucking his head into the crook of his elbow with a wide grin on his face.
“It was my friends who pushed me to do it, but I’ve stopped with that now,” he said after on-ice sessions at UBC. “You’re not going to see me do that again.”
One of the big reasons why he stopped was his older brother, Nashville Predators prospect Emil Pettersson.
“My brother was ashamed when I did it,” he says, confirming that Emil didn’t like the dab: “No. No no no no no.”
His older brother wasn’t the only one telling him to cut it out, however.
Jonathan Dahlen may have been Pettersson’s best friend in Sweden, but he was quick to deny any responsibility for Pettersson dabbing on the ice, making it clear that he wasn’t one of the friends pressuring him to do it.
“I was one of the friends who pressured him to stop,” says Dahlen. “It was a quick end to that.”
Even if Dahlen wasn’t a fan of the dab, having another teenager on the top line for Timrå IK might have helped Pettersson feel confident enough to try such a young man’s move. It’s unusual for even one teenager to play a top line role in the Allsvenskan, let alone two. That’s partly because most teenaged players in the Allsvenskan are just on loan from their SHL clubs.
“Most teenagers play on a junior team with an SHL team,” says Dahlen. “They go up to play 8 to 10 minutes per game on a third or fourth line, but we were playing 18-20 minutes in a pro league and getting power play time.”
For Dahlen, he recommends that other young players take a similar route, signing with an Allsvenskan team to play more significant minutes against men rather than minimal minutes in the SHL.
Dahlen has a choice to make, whether to go back to Sweden to play in the SHL next season or come over to North America to play in the AHL and hope for an NHL opportunity. Pettersson, on the other hand, has already made his choice. Barring a crazy development at Canucks training camp in the Fall, Pettersson will return to Sweden.
“I’m going to play in Växjö,” he says, then jokes, “It’s hard to pronounce for you guys.”
The question is whether he’ll get the same opportunity for Växjö that he did for Timrå IK, but he is optimistic about getting a top-six role.
“I hope so,” he says. “I can’t say where I’m going to play now, but yes, I hope so.”
The dab is dead.