Rangers prospect Nils Lundkvist shines at WJC

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One of the Rangers top prospects is defenseman Nils Lundkvist. Drafted with their 3rd first round pick of the 2018 draft, he has emerged as a blue chipper. He cemented that with a stellar performance at the WJC as he tallied 1 goal and 7 points in 6 games. Sweden was eliminated by Russia today in the semifinals. They will play for Bronze tomorrow.

Slick Defenseman

Lundkvist is a puck-moving two-way defensemen who is on the smaller side at 5’11”. He made a real impression in the SHL at just 17 years old and now at 19 has developed into a star.

From Sportsnet’s Emily Sadler in 2017: Lundkvist may not be the biggest blue liner on his future NHL team’s roster, but what he lacks in size he more than makes up for in smarts. He’s efficient with the puck, a skill he honed while playing amongst men as a 17-year-old in Sweden’s top league.

Future Ranger

We caught up with Nils last February and asked him about being drafted by the Rangers. He also gave his thoughts about prospect camp and where his game is today. The young Swede who likes to wear the #27 had a lot to say.

“It was a mix between happiness and relief after all the talk before the draft and sitting there waiting to hear your name being called. I also felt very honored to have been picked by such a legendary organization and to have been picked in the first round.”

Nils on being drafted

“It was a great opportunity to get to know the organization a little better and to find out what is expected of me for the future. It was also nice to meet some other guys that are in the same situation as me and also get a feel for the competition to see what needs to improve if I should be able to take a spot in the future.”

Nils on his first prospects camp with the Rangers

“My strengths would probably be my skating and how I see the ice and can predict plays. What I am working on improving the most is my shot and improving my overall physique.”

Nils on his game

People I’ve spoke with inside the Rangers organization firmly believe he is the future on defense. Along with Jacob Trouba, Adam Fox, and Tony DeAngelo the Blueshirts have a gluttony of talent on the right side. The question is when will Nils take over and for who? Get ready, because next training camp he will push for a spot.