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The 2018 NHL Draft features one of the deepest classes of Swedish players ever. As a 17-year-old Filip Hallander had a very strong season with Timra in the Swedish Allsvenskan. The Allsvenskan is the second division in Swedish Hockey. However, this is not similar to the AHL/NHL setup that North American fans are familiar with. Instead it is more like the Premier League/Championship format that English football fans will recognize. Timra qualified for the playoffs and earned promotion to the SHL for next season.
Hallander played a significant role in helping Timra to achieve their goals. He put up nine goals and 11 assists for 20 points in 40 games. Hallander also added a goal and an assist in nine qualification playoff games.
He has also had significant roles for Sweden on the international stage. Hallander was part of Sweden’s gold-medal-winning squad at the 2016-17 Under-17 World Hockey Challenge. He also played a number of games for Sweden’s Under-18 team, including an impressive showing in the Ivan Hlinka tournament (Bronze medal, four points in five games), and in the Five Nations. He was injured during the domestic playoffs, and missed the IIHF Under-18 as a result.
Filip Hallander Scouting Report
Centre/Left Wing — shoots Left
Born June 29th, 2000 — Sundsvall, Sweden
Height 6’1″ — Weight 185 lbs [185 cm/84 kg]
Hallander is a powerful skater. He has a long stride and is strong on the puck. He generates the power to fight through checks and get to the front of the net. Hallander has a powerful lower body and good balance. This helps him to win battles along the boards and to control the puck in the cycle. Hallander establishes his position in front of the net and is difficult to move. He could improve his top end speed though. He can keep up with the play but lacks the ability to separate from defenders. Hallander could improve his first few steps and his acceleration as well. This can be an issue in getting to loose pucks. His agility and edgework allows him to be shifty on the rush, and to create passing lanes off the cycle.
Hallander has a good arsenal of shots. His wrist shot and snapshot are both powerful and accurate. His release is above average, but could use a bit more work. Hallander can score from the slot, or from the tops of the circles. He is also strong on the backhand, with the ability to elevate the puck in tight to the net. His soft hands are good at deflections and at pouncing on rebounds. Hallander does not use his slap shot very often. It could use some work, and he is more effective at fooling goaltenders with the shorter wind-up.
Hallander has good stickhandling and puck control but plays a simple game. He keeps the puck moving with quick, accurate passes to the open man. He is not the type to dangle defenders or make a creative saucer pass but reads the game well and keeps the puck moving. A hallmark of Hallander’s game is the fact that he always keeps his feet moving. He is strong on the forecheck and pressures opponents into mistakes, which he can then take advantage of offensively.
Hallander’s strong work ethic is seen in all three zones. He is dogged in chasing down opponents in both his own end and the neutral zone. Hallander reads the play well and cuts down passing lanes with a long stick. He creates turnovers and transitions the play quickly up the ice. While he does not throw a lot of big hits, he is not afraid to battle on the boards or in front of the net. He is also willing to take a hit to make a play.
Projection and Comparison
Hallander needs some time to continue to work on his skating. If things go well he can develop into an effective middle-six forward, capable of playing key defensive minutes as well as providing some secondary scoring. Hallander will likely never be a first line centre, but he can be a valuable contributor at the NHL level. His game is similar to Ryan O’Reilly, but this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on potential or ability.
The following is a compilation of some of the many highlight packages of Hallander that are available on youtube.
Check back tomorrow for the next prospect on our draft board.
Embed from Getty Images
PLYMOUTH, MI – FEBRUARY 15: Filip Hallander #15 of the Sweden Nationals turns up ice with the puck against the Finland Nationals during the 2018 Under-18 Five Nations Tournament game at USA Hockey Arena on February 15, 2018 in Plymouth, Michigan. Finland defeated Sweden 5-3. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images Sport)