At this year’s NHL Draft, the Los Angeles Kings traded the 60th-overall pick to the New York Rangers, in exchange for 2017 seventh-overall pick Lias Andersson.
Andersson had asked the Rangers for a trade last season and spent the remainder of the 2019-20 season, as well as the beginning of this season, in Sweden. In a recent article, Andersson told Swedish news outlet HockeyNews.se that he doesn’t know whether or not the Kings want him back in North America for the 2020-21 season or whether he’ll stay in Sweden for the remainder of the season.
It’s an interesting piece of news and could have an impact on the Kings’ lineup this season. They still have some spots in the lineup to be won, including a potential spot for a left winger on the third line and should Andersson be in North America, he could compete for that spot.
It could also have an impact on Andersson’s development. Right now, Andersson has a total of 18 points in 23 games since heading to the SHL last season and seems to be finding his game in Sweden. However, Andersson is already 22 years old and it’s somewhat important for the Kings to bring him over to see how they can help him adjust to the NHL this time around.
It’ll still be a few months before the NHL and AHL seasons begin, so Andersson will have ample time to continue developing in Sweden’s highest league. While he could continue to find success there over the course of the season, however, the issue with Andersson was that he seemingly struggled to fully adjust to playing in North America and never really even excelled at the AHL level. So it’s great to see him performing well overseas but considering he’s already 22 years old, it’s important for the Kings to be able to work with him to see what needs to happen for him to be an effective NHL forward.
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Here’s today’s poll question (results and discussion will be posted in a future article):
What would you like to see happen with Lias Andersson?