Steve Yzerman has inked another one of his prized prospects to their entry-level contract, this time, it’s SHL standout Jonatan Berggren.
Berggren is coming off a searing-hot campaign with the SHL’s Skellefteå AIK — a promising sign that his bout with some previous injuries are behind him. The 20-year-old winger posted 45 points (12-33—45) in 49 SHL games this season — putting him comfortably in the league’s top-10 scorers.
Berggren was a part of Ken Holland’s last draft class in Detroit — and holy hell was it ever good. The Red Wings selected Berggren with the 32nd overall pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. That pick was acquired in a deal that sent former defenseman Brendan Smith to the New York Rangers.
As noted previously by Prashanth Iyer, Berggren was on an absolute rampage in the SHL this season:
Jonatan Berggren is having himself quite a season pic.twitter.com/hrgH2bkKjx— Prashanth Iyer (@iyer_prashanth) March 7, 2021
Tough to see Berggren slotting into the Red Wings lineup right out of camp, but he should fit nicely within the ranks of the Grand Rapids Griffins to get him acclimated to the North American style of play. Berggren turns 21 in July, so there’s no real rush to get him into the NHL. My guess is that Steve Yzerman will be patient with his development to pro hockey on this side of the pond, but if he gets off to the same type of start as he did in the SHL this season, I’m not sure how you keep him out of the Red Wings lineup.
If you didn’t get a chance to watch Jonatan Berggren in the SHL this season, here’s a highlight reel to get you pumped up:
This signing comes just a day after the Red Wings announced signing 2020 3rd round pick Eemil Viro (D) to his ELC, and there could be more entry-level deals announced in the days ahead.