That's Lindstrom with an N
While Detroit Red Wings fans might have been more excited to hear that the team had signed N. Lidstrom to a contract, an anagram of that famous Red Wing name was added to to fold when the club announced they had agreed to terms with Swedish defenseman Gustav Lindstrom of a three-year entry-level deal.
Selected 38th overall in the 2017 NHL entry draft, Lindstrom was actually tabbed earlier in the proceedings than seven-time Norris Trophy winner, Hockey Hall of Famer and Red Wings legend Nicklas Lidstrom was claimed in the 1989 draft when he went 53rd overall to Detroit. And over the history of his sensational career, many fans and even media mistakenly referred to Lidstrom as Lindstrom. But that’s about where the comparisons should and will end. Lindstrom is no Lidstrom, but then again, neither was any other NHL defender of the last generation.
What is Lindstrom, and what should Wings fans expect from him in the future? That’s hard to say at this point in his development, but he has spent the last two seasons, playing for Almtuna IS in the Allsvenskan, Sweden’s second division, and that could give him a leg up over North American prospects playing junior and college hockey. Lindstrom collected 14 points in 39 games this season, including six goals, which gave him a share of the team lead among defensemen.
“He’s playing against men already,” Red Wings director of amateur scouting Tyler Wright said. “As far as their development, they’re exposed an earlier age. You’re forced to grow up a little faster and forced to grow up a little more physically.”
As to his immediate future, the 6-2, 187-pound Lindstrom, 19, who is also a right-hand shot, always coveted along the blueline, will remain in his homeland. He will take a step up in competition, skating for Frolunda HC in the Swedish Elite League during the 2018-19 season.
“He’s just a real solid, steady, puck-moving guy,” Wright said. “A good heads-up player, who jumps into the play at times, and plays a 200-foot game. I think you just can’t have enough of those guys who can skate and move pucks.”
Lindstrom won a silver medal with Sweden at the 2018 world junior championship and also carries NHL bloodlines. He’s the nephew of former NHL defenseman Marcus Ragnarsson, who skated in 632 games for San Jose and Philadelphia between 1995-04.
Jim (Red Eye) Hay, a defenseman with Detroit’s 1954-55 Stanley Cup championship club, has died. Hay was 87.
Hay played 74 games for the Wings from 1952-55 and suited up for five games of the 1955 playoffs, scoring a goal in Game 4 of the final series against the Montreal Canadiens.
There hasn’t been much to talk about regarding the Red Wings and the playoffs these past two springs, but Braden Holtby brought some attention to a pair of Hall of Fame Detroit goalies and their playoff feats.
When he posted back-to-back shutouts in Games 6 and 7 of the Eastern Conference final against Tampa Bay, Washington netminder Holtby joined a pair of Wings goaltenders as the only puckstoppers to post consecutive shutouts in Games 6 and 7 of a Stanley Cup conference final or semifinal series.
Dominik Hasek did it during the 2002 Western Conference final, blanking the Colorado Avalanche 2-0 in Game 6 and 7-0 in Game 7. And Detroit’s Harry Lumley posted 4-0 and 1-0 shutouts in Games 6 and 7 of the Red Wings’ 1950 semifinal series against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Of good news to Holtby is that both of those Detroit teams went on to win the Stanley Cup.
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