The Philadelphia Flyers are picking 11th in the 2019 NHL Entry draft. That much is certain. There are still a lot of question marks surrounding who the franchise will select with that pick and there are a lot of options for the team to consider. Over the next few months, we will focus in on the possible prospects the Flyers could draft this June. We will begin our exploration with Swedish defenseman, Victor Soderstrom.
Soderstrom is an 18-year-old, right-handed defenseman from Skutskar, Sweden. He spent time this season between the SHL playing for Brynas IF and the SuperElit playing for Brynas IF J20. Soderstrom played 44 games in the SHL, recording four goals and three assists. He took the ice in the SuperElit for 14 games, scoring one goal and adding seven assists.
Offensively, Soderstrom is a dynamic puck carrier with incredible passing ability. His intelligence makes him capable of consistently making the right decisions with puck. His passing is not only smart, but crisp and accurate. Soderstrom’s skillful stick-handling and overall awareness make him a valuable puck-protector as well. Although it has not translated into a lot of goals, he has a great release that leads to both accurate and powerful shots.
Defensively, Soderstrom possesses all the tools necessary to become a successful blueliner at the NHL level. His decision making is top-notch, leading to consistent correct positioning. Soderstrom rarely looks out of place and is used to taking on the opposition’s top lines. Additionally, he always provides the appropriate amount of pressure to opposing teams, limiting their options and offensive production.
Soderstrom’s work ethic and energy are unmatched. He’s always giving it his all, doing what it takes for his team to come out victorious. Soderstrom possesses great hockey sense, making correct decisions and anticipating what will happen next. He’s a good skater with great balance and mobility which may translate into more offensive production as he continues to develop. As far as physicality, Soderstrom’s presence is most felt on the boards and down low. He’s not much of a bruiser which is totally fine in today’s game.
Breaking it all Down
The Philadelphia Flyers are getting to the point where they need to replenish their defensive prospect pool. Taking Victor Soderstrom with the 11th pick would be a great way to jump start that effort. However, there is a chance that a forward ranked in the top ten drops to Philadelphia’s pick. If that is the case, the Flyers need to take the “best player available” approach. For now, Soderstrom is certainly someone Flyers fans should familiarize themselves with.
Mandatory Credit: Photo courtesy of Nathalie Andersson