On April 28th, one NHL team will be blessed with a generation talent on their backend, potentially changing their franchise outlook for the next 20 years.
The NHL’s Draft Lottery order will be announced, and the team winning the lottery will have the opportunity to draft future No. 1 Swedish defenceman Rasmus Dahlin.
You’ve heard all the hype about Dahlin, and have witnessed some of the spectacular plays he makes that are simply a head above everyone else.
The puck-moving defenceman has made a name for himself in the hockey community for his incredible hockey smarts that exploits open areas of the ice, his dynamic skating ability, and elusive puck skills. Not to mention, he can move the puck just as well as he can stop opponents from carrying the puck with his superb hitting ability.
Back in December, fellow Swedish defenceman Nickas Lidstrom said that the 17-year-old reminded him of former Rangers defenceman Brian Leetch. Now, the four-time Stanley Cup champion told Dana Wakiji of DetroitRedWings.com that he thinks Dahlin is ahead of the development curve compared to where he was when he was Dahlin's age.
If one of the best defenceman to ever play the game is saying this, then you know Dahlin is the real deal.
Lidstrom was famous for using his body to angle guys towards the boards while keeping an active stick to disrupt any sustained zone time or cycles. While we’re not quite sure how Dahlin will adjust to the NHL pace in his rookie season, he’ll be hard pressed to match the defensive skills that Lidstrom possessed, but given how good he is in other aspects of the game, don’t be surprised to see Dahlin round out his game once he comes to North America, because the offensive skills are all there.
In 41 regular season games with Frolunda this season, the young phenom put up 7 goals and 13 assists, and has contributed with 3 points in six playoff games.