Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the daily column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day I will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2017 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow me on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “NHL Draft”! We have a complete listing of our draft articles here. Today we look at Lukas Elvenes.
Lukas Elvenes is another prospect coming from excellent hockey bloodlines. His grandfather Bjorn Elvenes played pro hockey in Sweden during the 60s and 70s. His father Stefan Elvenes, was a pro player in Sweden in the 80s and 90s before going to Denmark to finish his career. Older brother, Ludvig Elvenes is a teammate with Rogle, and he has two uncles who played pro hockey in Sweden.
Elvenes played 12 games for Rogle’s main team this year, but did not get a lot of ice time, and didn’t score any points. He scored 45 points in 41 games in the Under 20 league. It was the most points of any Under-18 player in the league last year. Elvenes has represented Sweden at the Under 18s, the Five Nations, the Ivan Hlinka, the Under 17 Hockey Challenge and various other tournaments over the years.
Lukas Elvenes Scouting Report: 2017 NHL Draft #76
Left Wing — shoots Left
Born August 18th, 1999 — Ängelholm, Sweden
Height 6’0.25″ — Weight 172 lbs [183 cm / 78 kg]
Elvenes is a very good skater. He has very good speed. However it is his edge work and agility that really set him apart. He can make very quick changes of direction, turns, and other lateral movements in order to get past a defender. Once he gets an opening, Elvenes has the acceleration necessary to blow past his man and create a scoring opportunity. He also has good lower body strength. This gives him the power to fight through checks as well as the balance necessary to be strong on the puck and win battles on the boards or in front of the net.
Lukas Elvenes is an outstanding stick handler. He can make plays with the puck in very tight spaces and at top speed. When this is combined with his skating ability, he can create a ton of offence off the rush. He is also very good on breakaways and in the shootout, as well as creating space and opportunities with open ice on the power play. However, Elvenes has a tendency to rely on his skill a little too much at times. He can get himself into trouble by trying to do too much with the puck, and not effectively using his linemates.
Elvenes is very creative as a playmaker. He can make passes through tight spaces, and set up plays for linemates. Elvenes extends plays waiting for a teammate to get open and then can hit him with a quick tape-to-tape pass for a good scoring opportunity. As far as his scoring goes, he has the soft hands to finish in tight to the net. His shot has a good release, but can use an increase in power from further out. More importantly though, he needs to work on his accuracy, as missed nets can be a problem. While he is not a big hitter, Elvenes is willing to play a physical game, battle for loose pucks and get to the dirty areas of the ice.
Elvenes is a solid two-way player. He brings his grittiness to the defensive end of the ice, battling for loose pucks and helping to contain opposing forwards. He backchecks effectively, and supports the defence down low. His good skating and positioning helps Elvenes in his own end.
Projection and Comparison
Lukas Elvenes is a boom or bust type. There are real offensive skills here, but he must learn to pick his spots, and to make better use of his skills. His production to date, especially at the international level, is hit and miss to date. In terms of a style comparison, Elvenes game reminds me of Alex Kovalev. However this is just a style comparison and not one based on talent.
The following is a compilation of highlights, assembled from Youtube.
Check back tomorrow for the next prospect on our draft board.
Main Photo via Twitter.