Joel Dorcas | May 22nd, 2020
Get your popcorn ready if you like quick, agile, shifty, fast hockey. That’s what Swedish born Lucas Raymond will be bringing to the table once he gets to the NHL. We already know this style has worked for the likes of Mitch Marner and Mathew Barzal. This is what we have to look forward to in a few years if everything goes to plan for this elite talent from Gothenburg Sweden. Let’s break it down and find out more!
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Position: Left Wing
Team: Frolunda (Swedish Hockey League)
2020 Draft Prospect Ranking (Central Scouting): Fourth amongst European skaters
The Competition is Real
The path to stardom is a little different for Lucas Raymond. He most recently is honing his craft in the Swedish Hockey League where the competition is made up of mostly full-grown professionals that are much older. This is good and bad. The good is, of course, structured, sound at both end’s style of hockey. The bad is young phenoms like Raymond(just turned 18) are relegated to fourth-line type minutes without powerplay exposure. The end result is four goals and six assists in 33 games- nothing to be discouraged about considering.
First and foremost, Lucas Raymond is an elite playmaker that plays well at both ends of the rink. His offensive skill-set, however, is immediately evident. He is a very good skater, is very agile and quick, has excellent vision, and is an excellent stick handler. He is also very fast with and without the puck. Raymond has the ability to be a 30 goal scorer and also be in the range of 50 assists if we project what is possible at the NHL level. He notched plenty of helpers during his time with Frolunda(Junior under 20) when he was 16/17 years of age. In 37 games he had 35 assists as well as 13 goals. When it’s time to pull the trigger, Raymond can use his strong wrist shot which is another one of his strong suits.
Raymond’s time spent in the Swedish League has taught him a lot about his overall game. If you want to play you have to be responsible in your own end. Raymond is learning to defend just as much as he is learning how to score, this will translate well in the NHL. Learning the skills will open up even more opportunities at the professional level.
Also of note is Raymond’s relentlessness. He chases the game rather than waits for the game to come to him. He is well-versed in forechecking and retrieving the puck from the competition.
Lucas Raymond isn’t far away from being ready for the NHL, just don’t expect him to start immediately. He has the advantage of having played against players much older and established than him for quite some time so that will help the process. Raymond will likely need to fill out his frame a bit to withstand the bruises at the next level. Although his game doesn’t lend to the physical style of play he certainly doesn’t shy away from it.
Once his game gets refined more in the Swedish League, Raymond is likely to be featured on many Highlight reels across North America by way of dangling, deeking, and sniping. Raymond is likely to get selected in the top 10 for the Draft that has yet to settle on a date because of the uncertainty of the current season.
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Main Image Credit:Embed from Getty Images