Rangers Select [F] Lias Andersson with 7th Overall Pick

With the seventh overall pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, the New York Rangers select Lias Andersson from HV71 of the Swedish Hockey League.

Andersson is known as being a strong two-way forward with offensive potential. While not being a very large player at 6’0″ and 200 lbs, he uses his body to his advantage to control puck possession. His skating is improving though it does not impede his overall play. Andersson sees the ice very well and is very good at distributing the puck. He has a shot that isn’t overtly deadly, but very much capable of beating goaltenders. He’s more capable of producing offense by working his way into the dirty areas.

The Swede is a very low-risk pick for the New York Rangers given his style of play. He’s very disciplined and his two-way game will allow him to transition very nicely to NHL play. He projects as a middle six forward that can play in all situations and his likelihood of playing in the NHL is higher than some of the other players eligible. Andersson would be eligible to play in Hartford during the 2017-18 season should he choose to.


  1. Quote Originally Posted by Giacomin
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    Haha. Hey that league is not juniors. They're big boys and they play and honor defense.

    Don't expect prolific scoring from there and he probably never projects out to a scorer, but who knows. He's 18.

    Whatever the case, the Swedes’ contribution to the NHL in the last couple of decades has been outstanding. I’m optimistic for Andersen, even if he did not blow the doors of camp.

    Quote Originally Posted by Respecttheblue
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    Must've been told / under instructions to keep his defensive game solid

    Haha. Hey that league is not juniors. They're big boys and they play and honor defense.

    Don't expect prolific scoring from there and he probably never projects out to a scorer, but who knows. He's 18.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cash or Czech?
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    Then yeah, he's 10 GP, 2-2-4 for Frolunda this year per EliteProspects. For some weird reason, he's not listed on the roster on Hockeydb.com.

    Must've been told / under instructions to keep his defensive game solid

    Quote Originally Posted by Dunny
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    That's weird, he doesn't show up in hockeydb.

    Hockeydb isn't great with the National teams and minor league, junior etc versions of European teams. Eliteprospects.com is way better at tracking that.
    Love it, thanks for the post. It's nice to be excited about a top end prospect again, seems like forever!

    I get the impression the kid can be whatever he wants, subject to coaching and how he applies himself, capping at 2nd line C. I love his confidence in interviews though, and I'm hopeful of a solid 2nd line C. I loved the clips I saw of him and can't wait to see him against NHL talent.

    Sent from my iPhone using Blueshirts Brotherhood mobile app powered by Tapatalk
    Here's an incredibly complimentary write-up about the kid:

    Any of you statistics buffs out there should read it. And everyone else should read it just for the compilation of scouting reports. One tidbit I found interesting was that since 1981, only eight players have scored 19 or more points in the SHL in their draft season: Markus Naslund, Daniel/Henrik Sedin, Robert Nilsson, Nicklas Backstrom, Victor Hedman, Elias Lindholm and Lias Andersson.

    Here's the compilation of scouting reports part:

    From Future Considerations:

    A smart, mature, two-way center…good decision-making, leadership qualities and advanced understanding of the game…a true three-zone player…defensively responsible…will drop to block shots or get his body in passing lanes…dangerous forechecker who reads the defense and uses an active stick to disrupt…covers up the ice for his teammates on the backcheck and always gives an honest effort…doesn’t commit a lot of mistakes and plays a very calm game while in puck possession…has solid offensive instincts…protects the puck very well and uses all of his frame to hold opponents off the puck…possesses a nice, quick shot release…not a flashy puckhandler, but can carry it up ice and distributes it well…goes to the net and plays in traffic…has solid vision and the ability to set up his linemates…has good balance and generates healthy amounts of speed…a potential two-way guy in the Zetterberg mold.

    From the Hockey Prospect Black Book (Excerpt from publication):

    A solid forward who has played both center and wing. Andersson is a very good playmaker who has the ability to drive the play. He is an aggressive player who often wins races for loose pucks and he is adept at one on one battles. His wrist shot and one-timer are excellent, both pack some bigtime punch. He’s a player who could excel on an NHL power play.

    From Corey Pronman of ESPN (Excerpt only – full article behind pay wall):

    He won’t dazzle with high-end dekes, but there is a lot of skill to Andersson’s game. He makes quick decisions, has a quick shot, sees his options well and has good puck skills. Andersson might be below average in size, but he’s tough and strong for a player his age, and he can kill penalties adequately.

    From Jimmy Hamrin of McKeen’s Hockey (Excerpt only – full article behind pay wall):

    Lias Andersson is a good bet to make the NHL on a regular basis. Depending on his future development I can see him becoming anything from a second line center to a bottom six center for an NHL team and being effective in any of those roles. He has the offensive drive, the shot and good enough skills to suggest him reaching the level of being a second line center at the highest level. He lacks the high end offensive talent necessary to be a first line center. For the upcoming draft I would be surprised if he is not a first round pick and would look about righ anywhere in the top 20. He is a safer bet than Liljegren or Pettersson as he is not as raw and is a bit further ahead in his development as of today but he does not have the same level of top skills and high end potential as those two.

    From The Draft Analyst:

    One of the few forward prospects who played consistent minutes for a contending adult team, Andersson showcased more creativity and puck skills at several best-on-best tournaments while manning one of Sweden’s top two lines. He’s a 200-foot battler with soft hands and makes smart decisons while motoring up ice. Andersson is a virtual lock for a lengthy NHL career, and his style of play can fit any system.

    Andersson is a mature, two-way center who can occasionally fill in on the wing. He had a strong rookie season in the SHL, finishing with 19 points in 42 games for a talented HV71 club. Andersson has run the gauntlet of international competition with aplomb, placing among Sweden’s leaders in goals and points at the last WJC and U18 world championship. A shifty, elusive player with good acceleration who is quick on his feet and a has knack for making something out of nothing, Andersson has a ton of upside considering how well he fared as a teenager on a good team in an adult league. He has a very good shot, mainly for his release and accuracy rather than sheer power. Playing inside is something he’ll do with regularity, and Andersson’s proven to snap off a quick shot while cutting across or in full stride.

    Good quotes here...

    “A late ’98 birthday, Andersson is an excellent two-way player who excels in every part of the rink. Can completely drive a line with the way be attacks the game. Not sure if he’ll ever have elite skill, but is such a valuable player.” – Jeff Marek, Sportsnet

    “Work ethic and consistency elevate him above peers. Does it all. Natural leader.” – ISS (International Scouting Services)

    Quote Originally Posted by So Nashty
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    Im sure with the lack of 1st rounder the last few seasons Gorton and Co. probably thought a safe pick was worth the lack of ceiling here. Its certainly not an exciting pick but it may grow on us.

    He's gonna score the cup-clinching goal in 7 years.
    I'm Danish and totally biased, but I'm really excited about Lias. I watched him a couple of games for HV last year and he was very impressive in a tough league.

    People are talking a lot about Elias Pettersson doing well for Timrå, but thats Allsvenskan - the second league. Lias did the job in the SHL - arguably a top-5 league in the World.
    Just read that apparently he was the 5th youngest player in the SHL this year, and didn't realise HV71 won the title this year.

    His draft rankings across the board were:

    Hockeyprospects.com - No. 12
    ISS Hockey Top 31 - No. 20
    Future Considerations Top 31 - No. 13
    McKeen's Hockey Top 31 - No. 11
    NHL Central Scouting Top 31 (Europe) - No. 3


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