Joni Ikonen, KalPa, Liiga (Finland)
KalPa’s struggles continue. The team got a win, against Joonas Nättinen’s JYP, but also lost 5-1 to HPK.
Being stranded at the bottom of the table does not really help the progress of Joni Ikonen. It is positive that his time on ice is staying around the 10-minute mark, and that he is solid as the centre on the fourth line. The negative bit is that it is the first line’s time that gets cut when KalPa is in trouble but Ikonen is not lifted up to be part of another line.
KalPa plays three important games this week: HIFK on Wednesday, Ilves on Friday, and Jukurit on Saturday. Both Ikonen and KalPa need to step up and get a few points in to avoid the relegation series later in the season.
Lukas Vejdemo, Djurgården, SHL (Sweden)
What can we say about Lukas Vejdemo that hasn’t already been said this season? In Tuesday’s game against Linköping he had a goal disallowed that I am still not sure should have been called off. But without further ado, Vejdemo got the line going and tipped in another goal.
The best thing with Vejdemo’s current performance is that all his points are coming from five-on-five play, and in one instance when Djurgården was playing a man short. Vejdemo is still fifth on scoring on the Djurgården team, but without any power-play time that is a great achievement.
Arvid Henrikson, Örebro U-20, SuperElite South, (Sweden)
No games for Henrikson this week.
Max Friberg, Frölunda, SHL (Sweden)
It was a calm and collected Max Friberg that met up with Eyes On The Prize to record the PuckDrop podcast (which you can listen to on SoundCloud or iTunes). He spoke about a few of the prospects in the Montreal organization, and also about his performance now that he’s back home.
Friberg is not worried about his goal production. “I have other ways of evaluating my game,” he said. He still racked up two assists and kept his ice time over 16 minutes.
Frölunda started more slowly than expected, but should be climbing up the standings, and so should Friberg’s production. His hustle mentality and overall play has impressed the coaches in Frölunda and he is being trusted in all situations.
The team is starting to get back on track, and projected top pick in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, Rasmus Dahlin, continues to shine with his outstanding skill and confidence.