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European Review: Martin Réway — A Dragon Reborn

All five members of the European prospect contingent found the scoresheet this week, led by Artturi Lehkonen's three-goal performance.

Fribourg-Gotteron

Martin Réway played his first two games in the Swiss league with Fribourg-Gotterón with mixed results, choosing the number 87 as an homage to one of his favourite players: Sidney Crosby.

The players in the SHL explode in a fury of scoring in a battle for top-dog honours this week, and, in Finland, Nättinen fights an uphill battle with his Jyväskylä.

ALLWEEK13

Joonas Nättinen, JYP

With three wins in a row (one in OT) it seems that JYP has managed to come out of a slump of four straight losses. Joonas Nättinen is involved in the play, getting plenty of shots, but he has little to show for it. Nättinen plays all situations and the team is dependent on him, but JYP is in the middle part of the standings table and there are clearly better teams in the Finnish Liiga.

NattWEEK13

Lukas Vejdemo, Djurgården

The hot streak for the rookie in Djurgården has continued with a goal against Rögle in a 5-1 victory, which he then followed up with an assist on the game-winning goal verus Örebro.

(A big thank you goes out to SHL Prospect Gifs for the highlights)

Vejdemo's line has played well, and was granted the honour of being listed as a first line against Örebro (same ice time as normal though). It is nice to see the recognition from the coach.

Vejdemo also got power-play time this week, and responded with an assist against Modo. While the tall Swede is making progress, the one area where he is lacking is his shot; both the quantity of shots he takes and the quality of the few he does manage. However, these are small things compared to the great leap forward Vejdemo has taken the the last few weeks

Vejde WEEK13

Magnus Nygren, Färjestad

Nygren plays the third-most minutes in the SHL, and is leading his team by example, never backing down from a challenge set by either himself or his coach.

With three assists this week — only one on the power play — he shows once again that his vision for the game is back to where it belongs. Färjestad scored four goals this week, and Nygren assisted on three of them. That's how important he is for his team.

Nygren WEEK13

Artturi Lehkonen, Frölunda

Two game-winning goals is as many nights for the Super Finn of Frölunda.

In the game against Nygren's Färjestad, Lehkonen was involved in a lot of the pressure that Frölunda built up in the attacking zone. First showing off some football skills kicking the puck to Joel Lundqvist, who roofed it. Then, in the 3-on-3 overtime, he got the game-winner by driving the puck into the net with a great slap shot. He said himself he wanted to hit it with all he had, and the goal must have been a great confidence builder. 
Lehkonen followed that effort with another game-winner against Rögle. When Robin Figren missed his deke Lehkonen was on the puck like a cobra, and scored form a very sharp angle.

With four goals in his last four games, and four points in the three games this week, I think it is safe to say that the Finnish striker is heating up. Lehkonen has now equalised his production from last year (8 goals and 8 assists) in 21 games (47 games last season). You can read more about one of Montreal's most promising prospects here.

LehksWEEK13

Martin Réway, Fribourg-Gotterón (Switzerland)

Réway showed off everything he is known for in his first games for his new team: vision, good hands, and a couple of assists. Unfortunately, he also discovered that there is a huge leap from the Czech league to the Swiss NLA, when he tried a move that would normally work in Extraliga on the power play, got stripped of the puck, and watched as Bern player Moser scored a short-handed goal.

Réway showed tenacity, and his coaches showed trust, as he continued to get minutes on the power play, setting up this play for the 2-2 goal. Fribourg went on to lose the game 4-2.

In the second game vs Servette from Geneva, it was Réway's turn to steal the puck and to deliver a great pass while surrounded by three defenders for another 2-2 goal, again Fribourg went on to lose 4-2.

Réway was -4 in the two losses, partly showing it's a big step up in league quality (and two empty net goals didn't really help), but it was an indication that his defensive game needs to improve, and that things that were easy in Extraliga might not work in the NLA.

It is, however, great to see Réway back on the ice and in a much better league. It will be a good league to measure the Slovakian against.

Reway Week 13 cell cursor removal