Red Wings of Tomorrow is assessing every prospect in the Detroit Red Wings system and what they are projecting to be in the future. We’ll be looking at the strengths and weaknesses of their game, as well as what the future holds for them as they advance through the Detroit organization. Today, we feature defenseman Simon Edvinsson.
How Acquired: Selected 6th overall, 2021 NHL entry draft
2021-22 totals (GP-G-A-P): 44-2-17-19 (with Frolunda SHL)
Contract Status: Three years remaining with a $925,000 AAV
Anticipated 2022-23 Team: Detroit Red Wings
There are some scouts who in retrospect are suggesting that in Simon Edvinsson, Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman got himself the best player from the 2021 draft. Certainly, the Red Wings are excited by what the 6-foot-5, 207-pound blueliner brings to the ice.
“He’s big,” Yzerman said. “I say big, he’s strong. He can skate really well.”
At 19, Edvinsson was playing top-pairing minutes and in all situations for Frolunda during the 2021-22 campaign. He was presented the Elite Prospects Award as the top junior-aged player in the SHL. Edvinsson is also a finalist for the EHC Young Player of the Year and was runner-up in SHL Rookie of the Year voting.
Edvinsson’s hockey IQ, gap control and ability to transport the puck are off the charts.
“The key word for Edvinsson is potential,” said Mark Seidel of the North American Independent Scouting Service. “He is a big kid that skates exceptionally well. His offensive upside has to develop because he hasn’t been consistent enough in that part of his game.
“He’s very good defensively by using his long levers, great skating and quick stick. Even if the offense never comes, he will be a solid NHL defenseman for a dozen years.”
Estimated Time of Arrival in Detroit
Edvinsson’s time is now. He’s being penciled into Detroit’s defensive sextet for the 2022-23 NHL season. He’s drawing inevitable comparisions to 2021-22 Calder Trophy favorite Moritz Seider.
“He does have a chance, yeah,” Yzerman said about he possibility of Edvinsson stepping right into the NHL. “I want to say a real good chance to play in the NHL next year. It’s a bit of an educated guess based on okay, this is what Moritz Seider did in the Swedish League last year. I kind of compare him to that.
Updated Simon Edvinsson's profile @DobberProspects
In multicategory leagues, there isn't a prospect defender with higher upside imo.
— Fantasy Hockey Lifer – Victor Nuño (@VictorNuno12) June 9, 2022
“Can he have a similar impact? He’s a different player than Moritz, really. Both are very good, young prospects but there’s a little bit of a difference in the two of them and we’ll see how he does. I’m optimistic and we’ll see.”
Detroit’s top pick in the 2019 draft – also at No. 6 overall – Seider moved from the SHL directly to the NHL. But it’s easy to forget that the German defender was given a year to adapt to the North American game in the AHL at Grand Rapids prior to his Swedish adventure.
If it should turn out that Edvinsson also requires a stint in GR next season to acclimatize himself to the smaller ice sheet, that shouldn’t be looked upon as a negative step in his development.