Two years ago, a giant Swedish defenseman with high-end skills shot to top of every team's draft board.
The feat is about to be repeated this season, as Adam Larsson
has wowed scouts and already is just as highly regarded a draft prospect as Tampa Bay's Victor Hedman
, who was the second pick of the 2009 Entry Draft.
The 6-foot-3, 200-pound defenseman isn't quite as big or physical as the 6-6, 230-pound Hedman, but scouts see Larsson as having a higher top-end offensively than the gifted Hedman.
"He is a leader on and off the ice," NHL Director of European Scoring Goran Stubb told NHL.com. "A big, strong, all-round top prospect who we will most probably rank as No. 1 in Europe. He has excellent hockey sense, size and strength. He is dominating the game when on ice. He has a very high overall skill level, is a great playmaker and uses his size and strength very well. In other words, a more or less complete package and a new Hedman."