Chris Peters of ESPN named Nils Lundkvist to the defense of his All-Prospect team this year and also named him a “runner-up” to being Prospect Of The Year. (ESPN)
Lundkvist, the 28th overall pick in 2018, finished second on his team in points (11 goals, 20 assists) and averaged 20:18 per game.
His 31 points and 20 assists this season “both the most by an SHL defenseman in his U20 season or younger in league history.” (Rangers Prospect Report)
On this past season, Lundkvist said that injuries to other players allowed him to take a bigger role and get more ice time and “showed the coaches that they can rely on me.” (NYR)
He added that he enjoyed playing a big role for Sweden at the World Juniors in helping them win Bronze. (NYR)
On which current NHLer he models himself after, Lundkvist said he likes watching fellow right handed Swedish defensemen Erik Karlsson and John Klingberg as well as Kris Letang, and since he has been watching the Rangers, Adam Fox and Tony DeAngelo. (NYR)
From the Rangers Prospect Reports since Lundkvist was drafted:
- 10/29/18: “He has an internal fire, the engine that burns really bright, and it shows whether you meet him or you watch him on the ice.” – Rangers Director of European Scouting Nickolai Bobrov on Nils Lundkvist
- 2/18/19: “After World Juniors, he came back (to Lulea) with a new energy and confidence. Since then, he has played great hockey and has taken his game to another level. His skating ability and speed have improved compared to last season, and he is noticeably stronger. Defensively, he is hard to beat due to his good hockey sense and mobility. Offensively, he has been more productive recently. He is taking steps to get better every day.” – Rangers European Scout Patric Kjellberg on Nils Lundkvist
- 10/7/19: “He is a very confident player this season. He makes sharp breakout passes and carries the puck with presence. He looks bigger and stronger (this season) and plays a solid defensive game. He has earned the coaches’ trust and plays a much more significant role on his team than he did last season.” – Rangers European Scout Jan Gajdosik on Nils Lundkvist
- 12/12/19: “I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I’m one year older and one year wiser. Last season, I think I put a bit too much pressure on myself and maybe tried a bit too hard out there on the ice. Now, I only try to play as easy as possible and keep it as simple as I can. This year I’ve started to play to my strengths a whole lot more.” – Rangers prospect Nils Lundkvist on his development from last season to this season (Credit – EliteProspects.com)
- 1/20/20: “It’s obviously something I dream about, to play in the NHL for the New York Rangers. If it’s next year or the year after that, we’ll see. It’s a goal I’m trying to achieve, but I’m not in a hurry. I just want to make sure I’m ready.” – Rangers prospect Nils Lundkvist
Scott Wheeler of The Athletic had Lundkvist as a member of the defense for his All Prospects First Team.
He wrote that “Lundkvist didn’t just have the best year of any D prospect, he had one of the better years by any player outside the NHL.” (The Athletic)
Lundkvist was recently rated by The Hockey News as the 52nd best prospect in the NHL and third overall for the Rangers.