2020 NHL Draft: Helge Grans brings the size and the smarts of an NHL talent
Birthdate: May 10, 2002
Place of Birth: Ljungby, SWE
Weight: 192 lbs
2019-2020 League: Super Elite (SEL), Swedish Hockey League (SHL)
2019-2020 Team: Malmo Redhawks J20 (SEL, Malmo Redhawks (SHL)
2019-2020 Stats: SEL (27 GP) 4G/23A/27Pts; SHL (21 GP) 1G/2A/3Pts
Final NHL Central Scouting Ranking: #1 EU Defensemen, #6 EU Skaters
As a defenseman prospect, Helge Grans best attribute is his mind. Despite already being a good size he is not an overly physical defenseman and prefers to rely on positioning and stick checks over physicality in his own end. When he has the puck, particularly in his own zone, he prefers to thread an outlet pass (which he does well) to using his slightly above average skating to move the puck. He is very confident with the puck on his stick and generally makes smart decisions and has shown a developing ability to flash down low in the offensive zone, particularly on the power play. If he can find a way to learn how to use his size and strength to compliment his positioning when in his own zone, specifically when it comes to clearing out the front of the net, he could develop into a good second pairing/second power play/penalty kill guy but if he does not add any physicality to his game he could be a more confident version of Jakub Kindl.
Draftniks have a late first/early second round grade on Helge and if he is there at #32 it would not be hard to see Detroit taking him. They are suddenly flush with right handed defensemen prospects but it could be hard to pass up on a defenseman with the hockey smarts, positional understanding and passing abilities that Grans has shown, especially if they believe they can get him to add a little more physicality to his game.
NHL Comparison: Alexander Edler
Kyle’s Draft projection: Fringe 1st-rounder, should be a lock in the 2nd round
Who do you think Detroit should take in this year’s draft? Leave your thoughts in the comments below and make sure to come back to check out more draft profiles of players who could put on the Winged Wheel come October 6th.