Another Talented Swede for the Rangers?

August 17, 2011, by

What can the Rangers fans expect from recently acquired Oscar Lindberg this coming season? Immediately the young Swedish pivot is going to have to show the Rangers a glimpse into his talent as a lot of Rangers fans were excited about Ethan Werek and subsequently disappointed when he was moved out for the Swede. Clearly, Werek didn’t impress the Rangers management and a trade with frequent trading partner the Phoenix Coyotes resulted in Lindberg becoming Rangers property.

A long summer since the trade has perhaps pushed Lindberg to the back of the minds of many a fan but given that he will almost certainly be playing another season of pro hockey in the SEL, Lindberg’s season begins sooner than the Rangers’. The SEL is due to kick off again in under a month and Lindberg will be hoping to make an impact as he looks to make a future in the NHL. Lindberg is under pressure and not just to show he was worth moving Werek for but because the Rangers are now stacked at center and Lindberg will have to show quite a lot to make an NHL roster spot a legitimate goal in the short term.

Drafted 57th overall in 2010, Lindberg can play both left wing and center so it’s not all panic for the Swede should he not see an immediate future at center in the Rangers system. Indeed, given the expiring contracts in New York next season it may play into Lindberg’s hands if he plays a lot of left wing this year with his club, Skellefteå. There’s a chance that the young Swede may share a line with another talented youngster, Oscar Moller. The LA Kings property has returned to Sweden after failing to crack a deep Kings line up full time and potentially the two young forwards could help each other this season.

Known more as a defensive, two-way forward Lindberg may benefit offensively if he has line mates such as Moller. A productive season offensively with Skellefteå will certainly push Lindberg into focus even though he is based in Europe. With the SEL season starting September 13th, we’ll be keeping tabs on how the Rangers prospect does over the season.


  1. Walt says:

    It will be interesting to see this kid develope in his own country. Correct me if I’m wrong, but is this Tim Erixon’s cousin? In any case, the future for us lies with the King, with some help from his countrymen!!!!!

  2. pavel says:

    I don’t see why people were so upset with Werek getting traded. He’s a decent offensive player, but he’s not THAT good. But anyway, I see Lindberg being kinda like what Blair Betts was before he bolted for Philly. And smart, two-way center that can win a ton of faceoffs. But more physical, seriously, look Lindberg up on Youtube and see what you get.

    • Chris says:

      I agree with you but a lot of people were not happy Werek got dealt. He was tabbed as a first round talent but never did convince NYR management it seems. I was Ok with the trade if a bit surprised initially.

      • Jess says:

        I talked to Gordie Clark about why Werek was traded and it was a matter of Werek not showing forward progress as a player after his draft year.
        It was not a question of his work ethic but (and I can’t argue this point) Werek hurt his knee and missed time 2 seasons ago then hurt his wrist and missed time last season.

        There was also the factor that Werek and his Kingston Frontenacs badly under achieved last season something a prospect can not afford in his contract season.

        Just IMO but I also think that the rapid development of Derek Stepan also played a role in making Werek expendable.

  3. Matt J says:

    My prediction: Lindberg replaces Boyle or Mike Rupp in 3 years time. But I think i’d be surprised if they both were brought back after their respective contracts expire. Boyle might be a very useful 4th liner but he’ll become too expensive for what he brings to the table by then.