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BLOG: Broberg to play in Sweden for 2019-20 season

Oilers 2019 first-round selection will lace up with Skelleftea of the Swedish Hockey League in the 2019-20 campaign

by Paul Gazzola / EdmontonOilers.com

EDMONTON, AB - Philip Broberg's decision is made.

The Oilers eighth-overall pick at the 2019 NHL Draft will dress for Skelleftea AIK in the 2019-20 season, as Broberg elects to stay in his home country of Sweden rather than transplant to Canada to suit up for the Hamilton Bulldogs of the Ontario Hockey League, who chose the rearguard 54th-overall in the 2018 CHL import draft.

"(The Oilers) said the place where you think would be the best for your developing is where you should play," Broberg told Adam Kimelman of NHL.com at the 2019 World Junior Summer Showcase in Plymouth, MI. 

"And if that's the OHL to play 35 minutes a game or the SHL and compete against men every day and play tougher games. Me and Edmonton thought that the SHL was the best thing for me."

Broberg's playing option was a hot topic when he attended his first Oilers Development Camp near the end of June. Oilers VP of Player Personnel Scott Howson knew the decision would ultimately be made by the 18-year-old but mentioned there was a dialogue with the Oilers throughout the process.

Video: ASK AN OILER | Philip Broberg

"The first thing that has to happen is the player has to want to come over," Howson said of the possibility of Broberg making the move to Canada. "He has to be open to it because I think if you force a European player that's not mentally ready or mentally focused on coming over, it's not going to work."

Broberg, who had two goals and nine points with Allsvenskan's AIK club last season, is prepared to compete against men for another year as he continues to mature as a player.

"It's a great organization for developing," Broberg said of Skelleftea. "I know I'm not good enough to make the NHL team right now, that's why I'm going to Skelleftea to play against men every day, to practice against them, to play in probably the third-best league in the world, to get better and come back next year and make the (Oilers)."

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