The Vancouver Canucks struck gold when they selected Elias Pettersson with the 5th overall pick in the 2017 NHL draft.
They got themselves a quality NHL player who went on to win the Calder Trophy in his rookie season and though he is battling through a rough patch this season, he has been scoring goals as of late and we all expect him to be back to a dominant player soon.
So what if
I told you Trevor Matterson told you that the Canucks could draft another Elias Pettersson?
But this time, he’s a defenceman.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Elias Pettersson.
Coming in at 6’2” and 185 pounds, Pettersson is a bigger defenceman whose number one asset is his shot. He’s scored 12 goals in 37 Junior games this year and has dressed for 10 SHL games as well.
Born in Västerås, Sweden — this Elias Pettersson is a 17-year-old left-shot defenceman who is currently playing for Örebro in the SHL. He spent the beginning of the season bouncing around in the J20 and J18 league but has played well enough to now stick with the SHL for the time being. Though he has dressed for 10 games, Pettersson is rarely on the ice in SHL action. Eight of his 10 SHL games have seen him have less than 2:30 of ice time but he has seen two games where he logged over 11 minutes of ice time (11:06 & 12:35).
He has been on the ice for three goals for and no goals against in his 29:43 of SHL ice time. Pettersson is without a point in his SHL time but has shown offensive upside in his time in the Swedish Junior leagues. He can jump into the play and bring offence when the situation presents itself.
It became very obvious that the best asset in his skillset was his shot. Pettersson was able to fire accurate shots while in motion which makes it very difficult for goaltenders to lock in an angle because of his movement during the shot.
Pettersson has been a big contributor on the back end for Sweden’s U18 team in his nine international games. He had a dagger goal against the U.S.A. this past August.
We expect to see Pettersson have an even better performance at this summer’s U18 tournament. He should be in Sweden’s top four at that tournament and may have a chance of being a late-round pick that can eventually get a shot in North America.
From our evaluation and projection, we see Pettersson being a 4th-6th round pick in the upcoming draft. The fact that he is practicing and playing with the SHL team is a good step in the right direction. He’s got a couple of 11+ minute games in the SHL as a 17-year-old and that stems from his play instead of COVID like we saw a lot of during the 2020-21 season.
Pettersson shows offensive potential with his ability to beat goaltenders from distance and moves pretty well for a bigger defenceman. He is pretty average with his physicality, he does engage on the boards more in his SHL play than we saw in his time in Junior.
It’s a cool story but we believe you can find some better players in the fifth-seventh rounds. Just for the story, if he is there for the Canucks to draft in the seventh round, it would be a lot of fun to draft another Elias Pettersson!
We just think there will be more valuable players in the draft, and we will likely look into that more on future installments of Scouting with Faber.