For the first player in this draft taken by the Hurricanes that is not Russian, we arrive at 6’2 Swedish defender Simon Forsmark. Another prospect that was predicted to go anywhere from the mid-second round to the early third-round, Carolina got the Kumla, Sweden native with the 101st pick of the draft. For those that do not want to do the math, that’s in the fourth round.
A silky-smooth puck-moving defender that is the size of an NHLer, he’s got a lot to like. He doesn’t panic when the puck is on his blade and can break his team out of their own zone almost at will. But unlike a lot of gifted offensive defensemen, his defensive game is also remarkably strong. This is a player that should not have fallen to the Canes and I do not understand how he did, but here we are.
His season in the J20 Nationell (Under 20’s league in Sweden) left him at over a point a game. That might not be impressive to some and you might think that a forward that wants to play in the NHL needs to be over a point per game in juniors. As I previously mentioned, he is a defenseman. That is a feat that cannot be understated. It is so rare to see a defender be able to do that. He tallied 5 goals and 22 assists for 27 points in 23 games.
However, the most impressive part? He spent 43 games with Oreboro in the SHL. He’s 18 and playing in a men’s league already. While he only had 3 points, he was not a liability defensively and it seems that he is on a good developmental track at this moment in time. He’s projected to play in the SHL next year and he does look like he could be a really good player. Not all of them will work out, but this class looks strong.