June 13, 2009

Random news - Where will the monster go?

Goalie Jonas Gustavsson, who seems to be this year's Fabian Brunnström, has narrowed it down to four NHL teams for next season. According to Aftonbladet, he travelled today to North America to visit Colorado, San José, Dallas and Toronto.

Gustavsson beat Henrik Lundqvist's old SEL playoff record this season for number of minutes without letting a goal in with the new record being 222 minutes and 40 seconds. This accomplishment gave him the nickname "The Monster" in Swedish media, which still lives on.

He ended up leading his team Färjestads BK to the Swedish Championship this year. Then he was awarded The Golden Puck and helped Team Sweden getting the bronze medal in the World Championship in May.

Gustavsson will get the maximum rookie contract no matter where he ends up, so money isn't a factor. Instead he is looking for the team that feels the most right.


Swedish defenseman Patrik Hersley isn't exactly one of the more known Swedes in North America. This season he has been part of the Philadelphia Flyers, but has only played in the AHL and the ECHL.

After two seasons in the AHL and the ECHL with not much to show for it, he has decided to head back to Sweden. Hersley had one year left on his contract with the Flyers, but will now instead play that year with the team where his career started, Malmö Redhawks in HockeyAllsvenskan.

Hersley is still just 22 years old. So maybe he will make the jump across the pond again one day, if he can get his game going at home.


Speaking of Malmö Redhawks; Detroit's super scout Håkan Andersson has expressed interest in 19-year-old defenseman Anton Blomqvist, who plays for that team. Andersson says the following to the newspaper Sydsvenskan.

Yes, we are interested. That we are, says Håkan Andersson.

A comment like that from a scout doesn't say much, but I thought it was interesting as the scouting service Redline called Blomqvist "the most underrated player in the draft at any position" just before last year's draft.

In that draft, Blomqvist was passed over. A big reason for this was probably that he basically had not played anywhere beyond the Swedish junior leagues. This year he played with the Swedish U19 national team though and impressed when he got a shot with Malmö's senior team in HockeyAllsvenskan at the end of the season.

Andersson describes Blomqvist as a big and mobile defenseman, who needs to add more muscles. I would also add that he got a bit of a mean streak and I must say he became a bit of a favorite of mine because of his finish to the season. Next season he will play full-time on Malmö's senior team.

A player to keep an eye on.

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