February 06, 2016

Jimmie Olvestad

Jimmie Olvestad grew up knowing how bright the sporting spotlight can be.

Olvestad's grandfather is European soccer legend Lennart Skoglund. Skoglund, a spectacular dribbler, starred in the 1950s and 1960s. In 1958 Skoglund led Sweden to it's only World Cup finals appearance, losing the game 5-2 to mighty Brazil. He once turned down a lot of money to leave Sweden to play for a a Brazilian club team in Sao Paulo.

Olvestad gravitated more towards Sweden's other game - hockey. Known for his tireless work ethic more than his offensive skills, Olvestad became a notable star in his own right by playing in over 500 games over 13 seasons with Djurgardens.

Drafted 88th overall in 1999 by the Tampa Bay Lightning, Olvestad also played 111 games in the National Hockey League. The Lightning liked the exuberance he brought to the ice. He was a speedy and agile winger with decent size. He was tenacious on the forecheck and very responsible defensively.

The Lightning hope they had found themselves a future energy-line winger. They brought him over in 2001 and he immediately made the team. But he was not used very often. Over his two NHL seasons, Olvestad played in 111 games, scoring three goals and fourteen points. But as time went by it became more and more obvious he would not fit under new coach John Tortorella's system. He was a frequent healthy scratch in his second NHL season.

Because of the lost season due to the NHL lockout in 2004-05, Olvestad returned home to play the season with Djurgardens and he never left. Rather than return to an uncertain NHL future he continued skating for his beloved team until retiring in 2013.

Since leaving the ice Jimmie Olvestad pursued a career as a personal fitness trainer.

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