Four Swedes were named on the list of the “100 Greatest NHL Players”





This is the National Hockey League’s Centennial Year (1917-2017).  In Los Angeles on Jan. 27 the NHL announced the “100 Greatest NHL Players.”  The selections were made by a panel of NHL executives, NHL former players and members of the media.  The selections included 24 players who were honored posthumously.

Four players from Sweden made the “100 Greatest” list.  They are Mats Sundin, Nicklas Lidstrom, Peter Forsberg and Borje Salming.

MATS SUNDIN – Mats (F) was born on Feb. 13, 1971 at Bromma, Sweden.  He played from 1989-2009 for the Quebec Nordiques, Toronto Maple Leafs and the Vancouver Canucks.  He was the first overall draft pick in 1989. He was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame on June 26, 2012 — the first year of eligibility.  He played in 1,346 NHL games. (The 51st most games of any NHL player.)  He was the captain of the Swedish national ice hockey team in the 2006 Olympics in which Sweden won the gold medal.

NICKLAS LIDSTROM – Nicklas (D) was born on April 28, 1970 at Krylbo, Sweden.  He played from 1987-2012 for the Detroit Red Wings. He was the 53rd overall draft pick in 1989. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Nov. 9, 2015. He played in 1,564 NHL games. (The 11th most games of any NHL player.)  He is the first European-born and trained captain of a Stanley Cup winning team (2008).  He is the oldest defenseman to ever record a hat-trick (40 years, 210 days).

PETER FORSBERG — Peter (F) was born on July 20, 1973 at Ornskoldsvik, Sweden.  He played from 1989-2011 for the Quebec Nordiques, Colorado Avalanche, Philadelphia Flyers and the Nashville Predators.  He was the 6th overall draft pick in 1991.  He played in 708 NHL games. (His career was shortened due to injuries.)  He is ranked fourth all-time in NHL career assists-per-game with 0.898, behind only Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Bobby Orr.

BORJE SALMING – Borje (D) was born on April 17, 1951 at Jukkasjarvi, Sweden.  He played from 1973-1989 for the Toronto Maple Leafs and during the 1989-90 season for the Detroit Red Wings.  He played 1,148 NHL games.  (The 141st most games of any NHL player.) His nickname was “The King.” He holds the NHL record for the most career points by an undrafted defenseman (787). In 1996 he became the first Swedish hockey player to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

More than 300 Swedes have played in the NHL.  Swedes playing in the NHL during the current (2016-17) season are:

CAROLINA HURRICANES — Eddie Lack (G), Victor Rask (C), Joakim Nordstrom (LW), Viktor Stalberg (LW), Klas Dahlbeck (D) and Elias Lindholm (C).

VANCOUVER CANUCKS — Jacob Markstrom (G), Daniel Sedin (LW), Henrik Sedin (C), Loui Eriksson (LW) and Alexander Edler (D).

CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS — Niklas Hjalmarsson (D), Marcus Kruger (C), Dennis Rasmussen (C) and Gustav Forsling (D).

DETROIT RED WINGS — Gustav Nyquist (RW), Henrik Zetterberg (LW), Jonathan Ericsson (D) and Niklas Kronwall (D).

EDMONTON OILERS — Jonas Gustavsson (G), Adm Larsson (D), Oscar Klefbom (D) and Anton Lander (C).

NASHVILLE PREDATORS — Mattias Ekholm (D), Calle Jarnkrok (C), Filip Forsberg (LW) and Viktor Arvidsson (LW).

ST. LOUIS BLUES — Alexander Steen (LW), Patrik Berglund (C), Magnus Paajarvi (LW) and Carl Gunnarsson (D).

DALLAS STARS — John Klingberg (D), Johnny Oduya (D) and Parik Nemeth (D).

NEW YORK RANGERS — Henrik Lundqvist (G), Mika Zibanejad (C) and Jesper Fasth (RW).

WASHINGTON CAPITALS — Nicklas Backstrom (C), Andre Burakovsky (LW) and Marcus Johansson (LW).

ANAHEIM DUCKS — Jakob Silfverberg (RW) and Jacob Larsson (D).

BUFFALO SABRES — Robin Lehner (G) and Johan Larsson (C).

CALGARY FLAMES — Mikael Backlund (C) and Nicklas Grossman (D).

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS –Alexander Wennberg (C) and William Karlsson (C).

COLORADO AVALANCHE — Carl Soderberg (C) and Gabriel Landeskog (LW).

MINNESOTA WILD — Jonas Brodin (D) and Christian Folin (D).

PITTSBURGH PENGUINS — Patric Hornqvist (RW) and Carl Hagelin (LW).

TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING — Victor Hedman (D) and Anton Stralman (D).

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS — Jhonas Enroth (G) and William Nylander (C).

ARIZONA COYOTES — Oliver Ekman-Larsson (D).

NEW JERSEY DEVILS — Jacob Josefson (C).

OTTAWA SENATORS — Erik Karlsson (D).

SAN JOSE SHARKS — Melker Karlsson (C).

WINNEPEG JETS — Tobias Enstrom (D).

Gus Forslund (1908-1962) was the first Swedish born person to play in the NHL.  He played right wing for the Ottawa Senators in 1932-33.




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