Filip Gustavsson

by Mark Allan on February 23, 2018


Filip Gustavsson, G

Catches: L

Height: 6-2

Weight: 185

Born:  1998-06-07

Hometown:   Skellefteå, SWE

Drafted: 2nd round 2016 (55th overall)

Traded to OTT - 02/23/18







February 2018 – Wisely clinging to future NHL sniper Daniel Sprong, Pittsburgh dealt goalie prospect Filip Gustavsson, out-of-favor D-man Ian Cole and its 2018 first-round pick, getting new third-line center Derick Brassard. Ottawa receives a serviceable blueliner and a potential No. 1 netminder to replace Craig Anderson at some point. Still marinating back home on loan to Luleä HF, the 6-2 Gustavsson has appeared in 28 junior games so far, including six outings for the silver-medal Swedes at the WJC, where Gustavsson allowed a mere 11 goals (1.91 GAA, .924 save percentage). Besides looking great in that Buffalo tournament, the 6-2 puckstopper has posted 2.18 and .924 in 18 games in his country’s elite men’s league. He could be in North America by next season. Mark Allan


January 2018 – Pittsburgh’s decision to draft the Swedish netminder in 2016’s second round is looking great after the 19-year-old led his country to a silver medal at the WJC. Named the tournament’s top goalie, Gustavsson allowed the championship-winning goal in a 3-1 loss to Canada on a deflection with just 1:40 left. Undefeated in five round-robin outings, he finished six tournament games with a 1.81 GAA and .924 save percentage. He has similar 1.71 and .925 stats in seven SuperElit junior games, although his 3.04 and .885 numbers in 10 Swedish Hockey League games on loan to Luleå indicate he has some lessons to learn playing against men. He’ll marinate in Sweden for at least the remainder of this campaign, but he seems to have a bright future in the NHL. Mark Allan



October 2017 – The Swedish hockey season has barely begun, but initial results are not encouraging. After playing 15 games with Luleå HF in the Swedish Hockey League last season, Gustavsson intended to be the No. 1 netminder for the men’s squad this time as a 19-year-old, admittedly an ambitious goal. He posted a 3.85 GAA and .852 save percentage in his only SHL game so far, although 1.97 and .927 in three outings for Luleå’s J20 SuperElit team indicates he’s still dominant against players his own age. Although Gustavsson is still young with a bright future, peripherals of 4.60 and .813 in two international junior games further cloud his present. Mark Allan


June 2017 – The Swedish netminder’s new three-year, entry-level contract will activate whenever he starts playing in North America. That won’t happen before the 2018-19 campaign because he’ll remain in Scandinavia for the coming season. An ELC was inevitable for the 19-year-old 2016 second-rounder, Pittsburgh’s top draft pick that year at 55th overall. Mark Allan

June 2017 – The plan for the young netminder to marinate in Sweden is halfway complete. In his transitional season, the 18-year-old performed well against players his own age and predictably not as well against the best Sweden has to offer. In six games with Luleå HF’s J20 junior squad, the player once dubbed the Swedish Carey Price had outstanding peripherals of 2.09 and .928, improving to 0.95 and .967 in three playoff games. Disappointingly, he made just one appearance at the WJC, although 2.00 and .947 were in line with his other junior stats. In 15 SHL outings, he registered 2.70 and .912, figures that should improve in the coming season. Mark Allan

January 2017 – Gustavsson has posted good numbers at various levels of Swedish hockey this season. In three games with Luleå in the country's version of major junior, he had peripherals of 1.96 and .935 in three games as well as 2.00 and .947 in his lone WJC appearance. While his numbers dipped to 2.93 and .911 in three other junior international contests, Gustavsson has sterling stats (2.00 and .931) in seven games for Luleå in the Swedish Hockey League, the nation's highest level of play. He absolutely looks like he'll be a player in North America. Mark Allan

October 2016 – Gustavsson, who still hasn't signed a contract with Pittsburgh (if only because the Penguins are over the cap maximum), is back with Luleå in Sweden. The Penguins will likely be content to let him marinate there awhile longer. Mark Allan

June 2016 – Without a first-round pick, the Penguins selected the top-ranked European goalie (by NHL Central Scouting) and No. 3 netminder overall (by International Scouting Services) late in the second round. A product of Sweden’s Luleå system, the northernmost franchise in the Swedish Hockey League, Gustavsson has proved himself with its under-20 squad and in brief callups with the senior team (.910 GAA against men in six games).  Internationally, he carried a low-scoring team into the championship game of the 2016 Ivan Hlinka Tournament, had the best save percentage in the 2015 U-17 world tournament and was named best goalie in the 2016 U-18 world championship. Gustavsson is undersized by the standard of today’s gargantuan NHL goalies, but at 6-2 he is certainly not a dwarf. Hockey is in his blood – his father was a Second Division defenseman for Skellefteå.

Mentally strong, Gustavsson remains poised and is used to handling a high volume of shots with the butterfly technique and good reflexes, including a good glove. He restricts rebounds well for a young goalie. His powerful legs propel him well from side to side and help him to handle low shots, although he sometimes over-commits when going post to post. Perhaps his biggest challenge will be learning not to stay so deep in his net, which helps him against cross-crease passes but offers shooters too much of the net to aim for, especially considering Gustavsson’s average size. Mark Allan


Fantasy Outlook: C+

A long-term project, Gustavsson could nonetheless eventually evolve into a franchise netminder. When will he cross the Atlantic?



Coming soon:


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