Prospect Ramblings: Projecting Team Sweden for the WJC

Jokke Nevalainen

2018-12-01

 

Article has been updated on December 5th after the release of the final camp roster.

 

The World Juniors are just three weeks away. Time to get excited! I released my projected Team Finland for the WJC a few days ago. This time, it’s time to project Team Sweden. My Finnish team had 25 players but apparently WJC teams are only allowed to register 23 players on their rosters, so I cut them down to that number for the Swedes.

 

This lineup is created with the assumption Rasmus Dahlin won’t be available for the Swedes. Yeah, I think it’s safe to say he’s not going anywhere from Buffalo.

 

Without further ado, let’s go through the lineup one line at a time.

 

Forwards

 

First line: Lucas ElvenesIsac LundeströmEmil Bemström

 

I’m assuming the Ducks release Lundeström for the tournament since he’s been playing in the AHL recently. Lundeström is the best all-around forward on this team, so I’m expecting him to play big minutes in all situations for the Swedes. Elvenes is a very talented playmaking winger whereas Bemström is one of the best goal-scorers in the tournament, so I think this line could do some serious damage. They should also stick together on the power play where Elvenes runs things from the right half-wall while Bemström shoots one-timers from the left side. Elvenes and Bemström played together at the most-recent U20 tournament in Czech Republic but the center between them was changing every game. Obviously they didn’t have Lundeström available there, so getting him should solve the issue.

 

Second line: Filip HållanderJacob OlofssonSamuel Fagemo

 

Olofsson is another great all-around center who is a favorite among coaches, so I believe the second line will be built around him. There’s some familiarity between him and Hållander because they both play for Timrå team in the SHL but they do usually play on different lines there. Either way, Hållander is having a strong season and deserves a spot on the second line. Fagemo went undrafted last summer but he’s having a great season, and he’s also heating up recently. It wouldn’t surprise me if Fagemo was drafted in the second round next summer.

 

Third line: Nils Höglander – Pontus HolmbergFabian Zetterlund

 

Höglander is the only first-time draft-eligible player on this roster. He’s been a full-time player in the SHL this season, and he’s been trending upwards lately. He also had a great U20 tournament back in August where he was Sweden’s best player by far. The Leafs drafted Holmberg in the sixth round last summer as an overager but that selection is looking pretty smart now as he’s having a good season in the SHL. The Devils drafted Zetterlund in the third round in 2017. There was belief he could miss the tournament because of an injury but he appears to be healthy enough to play.