Five New York Rangers prospects played in Sweden on Saturday
It doesn’t feel like October without hockey, but until the NHL gets started again, we’ll have to make due with news from abroad. In a huge grudge match between two of the best teams in the league, Frölunda beat Luleå 4-1 with one Ranger prospect on each team.
With the win, Frölunda moved into first place, one point ahead of Luleå. Rangers center prospect Karl Henriksson was back in the lineup for Frölunda after sitting out two games and he took advantage of his return getting his third assist of the season on Frölunda’s first goal of the game, 9:04 in to the second period. It broke a scoreless tie.
Henriksson played 12:40 and took four shots with two on goal. He also had one blocked shot and took a two minute tripping penalty in the second period.
It was a nasty, penalty-filled game. Top Rangers prospect Nils Lundkvist contributed to the penalties for Luleå when he took two simultaneous minor penalties for tripping and slashing. It put his team down two men and Frölunda’s Stefan Elliott scored his second goal of the game on the power play to make it a 3-0 game.
Lundkvist led both teams with nine shots and six shots on goal. He had one hit and blocked one shot in 21:06 minute of ice time. He finished with a plus/minus rating of -2.
With the loss, Luleå is in a tie for second place with Rögle with 22 points.
Speaking of Rögle, they kept pace with Frölunda by beating Skellefteå 5-4 on the road. Ranger center prospect Adam Edström didn’t score, but he took four shots with two on goal and finished with a +1 rating for the game. He played 16:45, the most ice time he has received all season and he was credited with one hit and one blocked shot.
In the one other game involving a Rangers prospect, defenseman Calle Själin and Leksand won in overtime 3-2 over Farjestad. Curiously, Leksand has now won three straight home games in overtime, all by the same 3-2 score.
Själin, a left defenseman, didn’t score, but he played a season high 22:49 and had five shots on goal and added two hits.
Leksand is in ninth place in the 14 team league. They have won only twice in regulation against five losses, but have gone to extra time five times, winning three games.
Lindbom back from injury
The Rangers had to be breathing sigh of relief from the news that goalie Olof Lindbom was back in net for Mora after missing three games after a goal crease collision.
The good news from the Allsvenskan League matchup with Kristianstad was that Lindbom was back in action. The bad news for Lindbom was that he ended up on the losing end of a 2-1 score in overtime. Lindbom played well as Kristianstad poured 41 shots on net before winning the game in the final minute of overtime.
— Mora IK (@Mora_IK) October 24, 2020
The Rangers have high expectations for Lindbom after taking him in the second round of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, but he has battled injuries for the last two seasons. He has a 2-0-1 record so far this season with a 2.43 goals against average and a .924 save percentage, seventh best in the league.
The good news out of Sweden is that Nils Lundkvist is still an offensive powerhouse, though he didn’t have a great game Saturday. The fact that Henriksson, Själin and Edström are seeing their ice time increase is also good news for the Rangers’ youngsters.
Sunday the KHL is back in action and we will see if Vitali Kravtsov can keep his hot goal scoring pace going as Traktor faces off against Amur.