Artemi Panarin is only listed as being 5'11, 170 lbs. By NHL standards, he's relatively small. And in a league that values size, that can sometimes be a problem.
Well, not for Panarin and his top-10 scoring performance in his Calder-winning rookie season. But still, sometimes the need can impress upon front offices: who's going to protect our smaller players?
Artemi Panarin will. Artemi Panarin is going to protect Artemi Panarin, because in addition to taking up Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, he's adding Muay Thai to his resume this summer.
Learning from a champion? Even better!
I kind of both do and absolutely do not want to see Panarin in a fight now. Do because I'm sure it would be amazing in its own right; don't because, you know, staying healthy and scoring goals kind of takes priority.
But the diversifying of off-season workouts is pretty awesome to see.