FlamesNation prospect update: August fun
Photo credit:Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
By Ryan Pike1 year ago
Usually we don’t do prospect updates during the summer. The main reason for that is, well, it’s the summer, and not much hockey is going on. This year is a little bit different, so we figured it was about time to provide a quick update on what a few European prospects are currently up to.
After several seasons in Lokomotiv’s system, Calgary’s third-round pick in 2019 has moved to Metallurg Zhlobin in Belarus, where he’s reportedly there for the season. Metallurg has already participated in the pre-season Ruslan Salei Cup tournament, where they failed to make the finals. Nikolayev had one assist in three games.
Metallurg plays a pre-season game against Ukraine’s Sokil Kyiv on Aug. 19, then begins the Extraliga season on Aug. 31.
Calgary’s fourth-round pick in 2019, Ruzicka is coming off a really effective season that saw him make his NHL debut and not look out of place. He’s off to a unique new challenge this month: the Olympic qualifying tournament. Ruzicka has been named to Slovakia’s roster for the qualifiers, which run Aug. 26-29 in Bratislava. There’s one spot up for grabs.
One of the teams that’s competing with Slovakia for one of three available Olympic tournament berths is Belarus – the other two teams in their pool are Austria and Poland. After playing last season in the KHL with Dynamo Minsk, and signing with the Flames during the spring, 2020 seventh-round pick Ilya Solovyov is part of Belarus’ qualification tournament camp roster. (He’s not on the final roster yet, as they have a handful of cuts to make). They play pre-tournament games against the KHL’s Barys Nur-Sultan on Aug. 19 and 21 before locking down their tournament roster.
As an aside, there are three groups of four each playing for one remaining Olympic berth apiece:
- Slovakia, Belarus, Austria and Poland
- Latvia, France, Italy and Hungary
- Norway, Denmark, South Korea and Slovenia
Calgary’s second-round pick in the most recent NHL Draft, William Stromgren is having a busy August (and will have a busy September, too). He’s currently in Rogle BK’s camp as he tries to make their SHL roster – so far, so good. He plays pre-tournament games this week, then heads to the Czech Republic to represent Sweden’s junior national team in the Four Nations Cup from Aug. 23-29. After that, he rejoins Rogle for Champions League games, and then the regular season begins on Sept. 11.
Acquired from the Florida Panthers in the Sam Bennett trade, Emil Heineman is back with the SHL’s Leksands IF club for the upcoming season. He participates in the pre-season Stromstad Hockey Classic tournament this week, then in Champions League competition from Aug. 27 to Sept. 4. The SHL regular season begins on Sept. 11.
(For the curious, Rogle and Leksands are in different groups for the Champions League, so Stromgren and Heineman could only play each other if both clubs advance to the Round of 16 and the clubs are drawn against each other in the random seeding.)
Finally, 2019 fourth-round pick Lucas Feuk is with Vasterviks IK of Sweden’s secondary HockeyAllsvenskan this coming season. Vasterviks begins their pre-season on Aug. 20 and their regular season begins on Sept. 25. (Allsvenskan clubs usually don’t qualify for the Champions League, so their schedule is a bit simpler.)
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