October 23, 2020

Do not expect Nils Lundkvist to sign an ELC with the Rangers this season

Nils Lundkvist (Lulea/SHL)

Highly touted Rangers prospect Nils Lundkvist continues to raise expectations with his play in the SHL. Although many fans want to see him in the NHL, it’s unlikely to happen next season. That’s because the deadline to sign a player to an ELC with a valid European contract has passed.

Nils Lundkvist ELC deadline passed

In a recent feature on Ottawa Senators draft pick Tim Stutzle, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly confirmed the deadline of August 15.

The rule is that a player with a valid European contract for the 2020-21 season cannot be signed to an NHL contract after Aug. 15. NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly confirmed to Pronman that this would remain true for this year. The signing window would reopen whenever the player’s respective international federation released him, be it at the conclusion of the player’s team’s season or, if he is invited to the IIHF World Championship, at the conclusion of that tournament. These rules are designed to give European teams roster certainty once a season is underway.

The Athletic

In order for the Rangers to get Lundkvist here next season they will need help from Lulea. The only way to get him here before the SHL season is complete is for Lulea to release him from his contract.

Another thing to consider is if it would make sense for the Rangers to burn a year on his ELC. The NHL season is expected to extend well beyond the SHL, but unless the Blueshirts are in dire need of his services, it would not make sense to lose that precious year.

Nils Lundkvist performing well

nils lundkvist
Nils Lundkvist leading the way (Lulea/SHL)

The Rangers promising future blue-liner picked up an assist in a 5-2 win for Lulea. This now gives Nils four points (2 goals and 2 assists) in 9 contests on the season. This year he’s one of only 8 SHL defenders to score at least two goals in the early going.

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