With the 96th overall pick in the 2016 NHL Draft, the Calgary Flames nabbed Swedish centre Linus Lindstrom.
The 5-foot-11, 165-pound forward led the Skelleftea AIK J20 squad in scoring in 2015-16 with 14 goals and 44 points in 42 games. He led his club in playoff scoring with five goals and 10 points in 6 postseason skates.
Lindstrom also suited up for Sweden at the IIHF U18 World Junior Championship, netting one goal and four points in seven contests.
"He’s the captain of their U18 team," Tod Button noted. "He’s a two-way centre. Our Swedish scout spoke very highly of him as a competitor and a guy that understands the game very well. He can play in multiple situations."
Here is what scouts have to say about Lindstrom:
INTERNATIONAL SCOUTING SERVICE - RANKED 65TH OVERALL
Lindström plays a strong two-way game. He had an average performance in the World U18 Championships. Average sized forward possesses very good hands and good puck skills. He has good one-on-one skills and isn’t afraid to take the puck to the net or pull up and make a nice pass to one of his teammates. He has good offensive instincts and skills. He makes calculated decisions on the puck and has shown the ability to play at a high tempo but needs to bring that same consistency and mentality on both sides of the puck. Has the ability to fire his team up when they are struggling or a little flat.
NHL Potential: 2nd - 3rd line north-south forward who can chip in offensively
FUTURE CONSIDERATIONS - RANKED 80TH OVERALL
Lindstrom is an excellent playmaking center. He sees lanes before they open up and hits his teammates with perfectly placed passes that they can skate into. He delivers hard, crisp passes of all ranges as well as the skilled saucer pass when the situation calls for one. Despite his size, he has no qualms with throwing the body and displays persistence on the forecheck. Lindstrom possesses a very good release on his shot off the rush and shows some excellent accuracy while moving at a full speed. After releasing a quick wrist shot, he crashes the net to disturb the goalie and look for any garbage. His biggest strength on the ice is his hockey smarts. He always seems to be in the right position, making smart plays, helping out in all zones and working hard. He comes back in support deep into the defensive zone and picks up the puck, skating it up ice or delivering a skilled dish ahead to his winger, setting up the quick transition before following up the play. Defensively, he is aware; he sees needs all over the ice and tries to fill them. While skating into the offensive zone, he can make a deke or two to get past the opponents. He combines using his sharp-cutting edgework, agility and hand speed to pass defenders. He has a decent, but not great top speed. However, with his slippery mobility, opponents still struggled defending or knocking the puck off of him.
NHL Potential: Middle-six offensive center