Linus Arnesson: 2013 NHL Draft Prospect Profile #44

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TopShelfProspectsDrafted 60th Overall by the Boston Bruins.

A late 1994 birthday, Arnesson was just 6 days too young to be eligible for the 2012 Draft.  However its been worth the wait for Arnesson as he’s been able to establish himself as a full-time defender for Djurgården in the Swedish Allsvenskan this season.  Playing against men has certainly helped him to show off his skills this season.

Arnesson was a member of Sweden’s silver medal winning squads at both the 2012 IIHF Under 18 World Championship and the 2013 World Junior Championship.  The majority of this report is based on his play at the two events.

Born Sep 21 1994 — Stockholm, SWE
Height 6.02 — Weight 185 — Shoots Left

Arnesson is a good skater, and this really defines his game.  His edgework, turns, and pivots are very crisp and smooth allowing Arnesson to be able to quickly changer directions in all 360 degrees.  This mobility makes him extremely difficult to beat one on one off the rush.  Arnesson has good speed both forwards and backwards, and a strong first step and very good acceleration.  He is solid on his skates, and has good balance making him difficult to knock off the puck.

Arnesson is best known for his defensive game.   He maintains excellent gap control, and keeps himself between his opponent and the net.  While not a big hitter, he erases opponents from the play if they try to beat him to the outside.  He also is more than willing to battle in the corners.  Arnesson has excellent hockey sense, and reads the play extremely well, allowing him to cut down passing and shooting lanes.

Arnesson’s offensive game is limited, yet he still has some good qualities.  His skating ability allows him to join the rush on occassion while still recovering defensively.  He is poised with the puck on his stick, keeps his head up and makes a smart first pass helping his team get the transition game started.  He doesn’t have much creativity, but he does make the safe and smart play and rarely gives the puck away or is overly pressured by opposing forecheckers.

Arnesson’s style is reminiscent of Toni Lydman.  If he can continue to develop and reach his ceiling he can be a staunch shut down defender in the NHL, the perfect compliment to a puck moving offensive partner.

Check back tomorrow for our number 45 prospect.

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