Skip to content

Oilers’ Gagner enjoys “high pace” of Austrian league

Dec 31, 2012, 1:50 PM EDT

Sam Gagner AP

Don’t put Sam Gagner on the list of locked-out NHLers disappointed with their time playing abroad.

The Edmonton forward has been plying his trade with Klagenfurter of the Austrian League during the work stoppage, and recently told the Edmonton Sun he’s thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

“It was a good opportunity for me to play and develop as a player,” Gagner explained. “It’s a league with a really high pace, so it forces me to really move my legs and I think that’s a really good thing for me going forward.”

The 23-year-old is currently on hiatus from Klagenfurter — he was part of Team Canada’s Spengler Cup-winning side — and it’s unclear if he’ll return to Austria, or head back to North America to wait for the start of the NHL season.

Either way, Gagner’s time in the EBEL (Erste Bank Eishockey Liga) has been a positive.

He racked up 10G-8A-18PTS in 19 games and also reunited with former Oilers teammate Andrew Cogliano, now with the Anaheim Ducks.

Cogliano also relished his time in Austria, albeit in a different manner than Gagner.

The Ducks forward joined Klagenfurter last month and described the experience as a reality check, citing long bus rides, small crowds and questionable officiating that made him appreciative of what he has in the NHL.

“It really does humble you,” he told the Toronto Star. “I know when I go back I won’t be taking much for granted. I can see myself playing even harder now [with the Ducks] and make sure I’m fighting for my job every game because we have it really good back home.

“We do things in the NHL that guys here wouldn’t even imagine.”

Latest Posts
  1. Selanne regrets harsh words toward Boudreau

    Sep 18, 2014, 8:45 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Kings v Anaheim Ducks - Game Seven Getty Images

    Maybe the English version of his book will be kinder?

  2. Columbus reacts to Horton (back) being out indefinitely

    Sep 18, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT

    Dallas Stars v Columbus Blue Jackets Getty Images

    At least the Blue Jackets’ GM is ruling out surgery.

  3. Flyers’ Timonen admits chances of playing are ‘really slim’

    Sep 18, 2014, 3:51 PM EDT

    Toronto Maple Leafs v Philadelphia Flyers Getty Images

    He’ll miss at least months, GM Ron Hextall said.

  4. Jagr: ‘I want to play until 50′

    Sep 18, 2014, 3:16 PM EDT

    Jaromir Jagr, Travis Zajac AP

    Hey, he’s got less than eight years to go.

  5. Desjardins (a.k.a. not Torts) makes good first impression on Canucks

    Sep 18, 2014, 2:25 PM EDT

    Willie Desjardins AP

    “I don’t think I had a conversation with Torts until Christmas last year.”

  6. Silent Blue: Armstrong will no longer comment on Schwartz

    Sep 18, 2014, 2:24 PM EDT

    Doug Armstrong AP

    “The next time I’ll talk publicly about Jaden is when we sign him.”

  7. Rangers to name new captain at end of camp

    Sep 18, 2014, 12:36 PM EDT

    McDonagh

    And it’s probably going to be Ryan McDonagh.

  8. Eakin, Dillon still without contracts in Dallas

    Sep 18, 2014, 12:12 PM EDT

    Cody Eakin, Corey Perry AP

    Two key youngsters on a Stars team with high hopes.

  9. Veteran d-man Lee going to Preds camp on PTO

    Sep 18, 2014, 12:06 PM EDT

    Ottawa Senators v New York Islanders Getty Images

    Former first-round pick missed extensive time to a torn ACL.

  10. Ex-1st rounder Barker goes full circle, will attend ‘Hawks camp

    Sep 18, 2014, 11:27 AM EDT

    Cam Barker AP

    Remember him? Taken 3rd overall in 2004… behind Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin.

  11. Wings lose young sniper Mantha (6-8 weeks) to broken tibia

    Sep 18, 2014, 11:10 AM EDT

    AnthonyMantha

    Tough blow for a kid looking to make the leap this season.

  12. Injured Crosby, Malkin will miss start of Pens’ camp

    Sep 18, 2014, 11:01 AM EDT

    Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin AP

    Just a precautionary measure, said GM Jim Rutherford.

  13. Paul Martin doesn’t expect extension anytime soon

    Sep 18, 2014, 10:35 AM EDT

    PITTSBURGH, PA - FEBRUARY 03: Paul Martin #7 of the Pittsburgh Penguins skates against the Ottawa Senators during the game at Consol Energy Center on February 3, 2014 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) Getty Images

    He spent a lot of time on the sidelines last season, but Pittsburgh leaned on him heavily when he was healthy.

  14. Selanne rips Boudreau in book

    Sep 18, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

    Teemu Selanne Getty Images

    Retired Finnish star was diplomatic after being made a healthy scratch, but now he’s opening up.

  15. Just how damaging are heated negotiations between Jackets, RFA Johansen?

    Sep 18, 2014, 9:01 AM EDT

    Ryan Johansen AP

    Is it still reasonable to believe this might have a relatively happy ending for both sides?

Sign up for Fantasy hockey

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. J. Quick (1381)
  2. S. Bennett (1326)
  3. P. Rinne (1175)
  4. K. Timonen (1173)
  5. N. Niederreiter (1166)