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December 12, 2012
World Junior Hockey Championship
by Corey Pronman
The following are notes on players for Team Sweden, the defending champions for the World Juniors. A few players were omitted who I had no information on. This isn't the final rosterwhich will be announced December 25th Merry Christmas, you've been cut!
Linus Arnesson, Defense, 2013 draft-eligible (Djurgarden-Allsvenskan): Arnesson isn't the kind of player who wows observers, as he is a quiet yet very effective defenseman. In fact, at a U-20 November tournament, he won top defenseman while displaying just that kind of game. He makes a lot of good reads, skates at an above-average level, and has some grit, too.
Viktor Arvidsson, Right Wing, 2013 draft-eligible (Skelleftea-SEL): I actually had Arvidsson on my Top 100 draft prospects two seasons ago but did not list him last year due to no viewings. This year I have been very impressed by the high level of skill and energy he brings. He could impress first-time observers at this event and may even make an NHL draft case.
Rasmus Bengtsson, Defense, Florida Panthers (Muskegon-USHL): Playing in the USHL for the last two years and with little international play, Bengtsson hasn't gotten a whole lot of exposure, but he is a notably above-average prospect. He is a smart two-way player who is a better puck mover than his stats indicate.
Jeremy Boyce Rotevall, Left Wing, 2013 draft-eligible (Timra-SEL): JBR has been passed over twice in the NHL Draft, so this is his last time to make an impression to a large number of scouts. He is a good skater who can play physical and show some, but not a lot, of finishing and creation ability. I have listed him on my Top 100 draft prospects for the past two drafts.
Sebastian Collberg, Right Wing, Montreal Canadiens (Orebro-Allsvenskan): Collberg didn't get much playing time early on for Frolunda and ended up being loaned to a level below the SEL. Collberg is a very quality offensive player whose physical game and frame currently keeps him from being a significant even strength player. He was impressive at the World Juniors last year, although in the November Under-20 tournament, he was average for Sweden.
Oscar Dansk, Goaltender, Columbus Blue Jackets (Erie-OHL): Dansk is not a shoe-in to get the top job despite the fact his talent level is among the best of the candidates. He is a very gifted goaltender from an athletic and reflex standpoint who shone in international play all of last season.
Jacob De La Rose, Center/Wing, 2013 draft-eligible (Leksand-Allsvenskan): De La Rose is a highly touted prospect, and a player who I have in the middle of my first round in the upcoming draft. He is a good skater, with quality vision, power game value, and defensive ability. He could fill a variety of roles for Roger Ronnberg even as a 17-year-old.
Christian Djoos, Defense, Washington Capitals (Brynas-SEL): Djoos has been a bit of a surprise this year, taking on a fair amount of responsibility for a defenseman his age in the SEL on a quality team. While he doesn't have offensive production to show, he is actually a gifted offensive player who is an above-average skater with good puck-moving ability.
Emil Djuse, Defense, 2013 draft-eligible (Sodertalje-Allsvenskan): I have little info on Djuse, but in the two games I've seen, I liked his mobility, and he showed decent hockey sense at both ends.
Filip Forsberg, Right Wing, Washington Capitals (Leksand-Allsvenskan): One of the game's best prospects has been playing at a high level in Sweden's tier-2 pro league and producing at a pace unusual for a player his age. Forsberg played a limited role in last year's World Junior tournament but should be leaned on as one of Sweden's top scorers this time around. His high-end skill and power element should be fun to watch.
Max Gortz, Right Wing, Nashville Predators (Farjestad-SEL): Gortz was very good at the summer camp for Sweden and he could have the potential to be a do-it-all player for them. Gortz is a big body who plays a good power forward game and he has the hands and offensive ability to add some value as a creator, too.
Elias Lindholm, Center, 2013 draft-eligible (Brynas-SEL): Lindholm is currently on pace to have one of the best seasons by a Swedish draft-eligible player in recent history. His skill set is tremendous between his top-of-the-line puck skills and vision, good speed, and a gritty element to his game. Lindholm is a potential lottery pick in the upcoming draft.
Hampus Lindholm, Defense, Anaheim Ducks (Norfolk-AHL): Yes, there are two Lindholms here, profiled in consecutive order to help avoid confusion. As I've written about multiple times over the last month, Lindholm has been great in the AHL for a defenseman his age. With the injuries to Jonas Brodin and Oscar Klefbom, Lindholm will log a horde of minutes.
Emil Molin, Left Wing, Dallas Stars (Brynas-SEL): Molin was drafted as a kind of sleeper pick in 2011 and he has developed well since. He is a player who can bring energy and offensive ability to his team and he may be able to produce a fair amount.
William Karlsson, Center, Anaheim Ducks (HV71-SEL): Karlsson has quietly become a top tier prospect, and with the possibility to center Sweden's top line, he could put his plus hands and hockey sense on display to a mass audience. Karlsson has significant two-way value; the only real issue with him is his skating and needing to bulk up.
Tom Nilsson, Defense, Toronto Maple Leafs (Mora-Allsvenskan): Nilsson is a decent prospect who shows good mobility, a great physical game, and this year I've noticed he's tried to get a little more involved in the offensive game although that won't be his strength as an NHL prospect.
Jesper Petterson, Defense, 2013 draft-eligible (Linkoping-SEL): Pettersson was a third pairing defenseman on Sweden's U18 team, so to be in consideration for the U20 squad is a testament to how his development has gone recently. He is an offensive defenseman who can skate and create with the puck. Size is his major issue.
Rickard Rakell, Center/Wing, Anaheim Ducks (Plymouth-OHL): Rakell is making his third and final appearance at this tournament and should be leaned on as one of Sweden's top players. Rakell has high-end puck skills to go along with a good gritty element and a developing defensive game.
Victor Rask, Center, Carolina Hurricanes (Calgary-WHL): Rask played a minor role at the World Juniors last time, even at some point getting benched. He started the season in the AHL before being sent to Calgary. Rask is a plus playmaker with a lot of talent who still needs to work on his skating.
Nick Sorensen, Right Wing, 2013 draft-eligible (Quebec-QMJHL): Sorensen has been very impressive in his first full season in the QMJHL. He has above-average skill, if not flashing plus to go along with a nice physical element to his game. I have him as a potential top two round player in the upcoming draft.
Mikael Vikstrand, Defense, Ottawa Senators (Mora-Allsvenskan): Vikstrand has just had a sensational and somewhat out of nowhere season. The seventh round pick by Ottawa has become a top player in Sweden's tier-2 league; he is amongst the top scorers for defensemen, which is very unusual for a player his age. Vikstrand is a smart puck mover with a big shot and he shows solid ability in his own end as well.
Alexander Wennberg, Left Wing, 2013 draft-eligible (Djurgarden-Allsvenskan): Wennberg was impressive at the Under-18's last spring and has elevated his game even more this season, looking like a legitimate first round prospect. He has great speed, an above-average amount of skill and a fine work ethic, too.
Corey Pronman is an author of Hockey Prospectus. You can contact Corey by clicking here or click here to see Corey's other articles.
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