Erik Karlsson sets record straight on bad blood rumor with ex-teammate

He's telling his side of things.



The Erik Karlsson era officially came to a close with the San Jose Sharks last weekend, as he was dealt to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a blockbuster 3-team trade that saw the Penguins trade goaltender Casey DeSmith and defenseman Jeff Petry to the Habs, who sent Mike Hoffman to the Sharks. 

And ahead of what will be his first season with the Penguins, he'll have the chance to face a former teammate in Brent Burns, with whom he played several years with the Sharks. Burns is now with the contending Carolina Hurricanes, while Karlsson joins an aging Penguins group who are trying to squeeze the last little bit out of the remaining careers of the famed trio of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Erik Karlsson.

And Karlsson is now taking the opportunity to push back on a rumor that his relationship with Burns wasn't on the best of terms.

“I don’t think we had a strained relationship,” Karlsson said of Burns. “We’re actually pretty good friends, personally.”

“I just think that when you don’t do well as a team, collectively, things don’t tend to work out for anyone. And it didn’t, for a long time,” Karlsson said of his time in San Jose. “It’s just unfortunate that it played out that way.”

In the meantime, Karlsson is looking forward to continuing his career and hopefully staying healthy.

“I’ve been healthy for a longer period of time. I think that really showed [this year], and it made me feel a lot better about myself in a lot of different ways,” Karlsson said. “My personal life, my kids and my family [are] in a good place, and kind of settled in a little bit.”

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