Dallas Stars' Prospect Grading Up And Down, A European Edition

Jamie Sabau

A grading of the Dallas Stars prospects based upon their season performance, improvement and performance compared to expectations.

This is a new feature that is debuting on Defending Big D this season: 'Prospect Grading Up And Down'. Essentially we will be grading how Dallas Stars prospects have done over the course of their seasons. This will be done on the basis of whether they've improved based upon previous seasons performance and how they've performed compared to expectations.

This particular grading will be of the Dallas Stars prospects based in European Leagues in Sweden and Finland.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

John Klingberg (D)

21, Drafted 5th round, 131st overall, 2010

Frolunda (SHL) 50GP 11G, 17A, 28P Up John Klingberg was hoped to join the Texas Stars at the beginning of this season but instead it was decided to send Klingberg back to Frolunda. Klingberg has played his first full season with a team since 2010-11. He became a top player for Frolunda and is one of the Dallas Stars top prospects. He is a high end offensive defenseman. He has turned pro and has joined the Texas Stars for the end of the season and their playoff run. He will most likely remain in Texas next year unless it is decided that he is ready for the NHL.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

Ludwig Bystrom (D)

19, Drafted 2nd round, 43rd overall, 2012

Farjestad (SHL)

51GP

3G, 5A, 8P

Up Ludwig Bystrom played his first full season in the SHL with a new team. He has been playing minutes on the bottom two pairings. He will continue to play in the SHL next year and hopefully continue to develop into a good defenseman. He is likely to need another two years in the SHL before being ready to turn pro in North America. He is still very raw and will need time to develop into the player that he has the potential to be. I'm not sure if his contract with Farjestad extends to next season but I think he will stay in the SHL.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

Niklas Hansson (D)

19, Drafted 3rd round, 68th overall, 2013

Rogle (Allsvenskan) 47GP 2G, 11A, 13P Up Niklas Hansson has become a solid fixture on a Rogle side which is fighting to be promoted to the SHL from the Allsvenska. He play mostly on the bottom two defensive pairings and has been key to their current promotion run. He has committed to Rogle, even if they do not get promoted, for next year. Rogle had received calls from multiple SHL clubs about acquiring Hansson for the end of the SHL season but Hansson decided to stay put for another year. Hansson is still rough around the edges but he has an exciting future ahead of him. It doesn't seem long until he is logging some top minutes and becoming the go to man on the blueline.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

Emil Molin (C/W)

21, Drafted 4th round, 105th overall, 2011

Rogle (Allsvenskan)

21 GP

2G, 10A, 12P

Even Emil Molin has had a mixed up year splitting time between Byrnas in the SHL, with limited or no minutes, and Rogle were he become a fixture on the second and third lines. Molin still has a lot of potential, and having signed an ELC it seems likely that he will go to North America at the end of the season. Molin is a creative player who never got or earned the minutes at the SHL level. In Rogle's promotion run he has had seven points in eight games showing that he can score. The future is unclear for Molin but it seems likely that with an ELC signed he will be playing in North America next year.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

Esa Lindell (D)

19, Drafted 3rd round, 74th overall, 2012

Jokerit (SM-Liiga) 44GP, 2G, 3A, 5P

Up Esa Lindell has become over this season a regular SM-Liiga defenseman. He has played 44 games with Jokerit, compared with 19 the year before, and has played mostly on their third defensive pairing. Last year his callups was due to Jokerit suffering lots of injuries. This year it is because he has earned it. With Jokerit leaving to join the KHL Lindell has found a new home with Assat. It is unclear what kind of role he will play for them but if he continues on his current development trajectory the future looks promising for Lindell. He also performed very well on the Finnish WJC team this year.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

Aleksi Makela (D)

19, Drafted 7th round, 182nd overall, 2013

Ilves U20 (Jr. A SM-Liiga)

25GP, 3G, 11A, 14P

Up Aleksi Makela is one of the most mysterious of the Dallas Stars prospects with very little information obtainable about him. He missed a good chunk at the beginning of the season due to injury but since his return he has performed well. He had 14 points in 25 games at the U20 level and earned a callup to the big club in the SM-Liiga at the end of the season. Next year I hope that Makela takes the next step and is playing regularly either in the SM-Liiga or on loan to a team in the Mestis.

Name 2013-14 Team Statistics Up/Down/Even Future

Henri Kiviaho (G)

20, Drafted 5th round, 144th overall, 2012

KalPa (SM-Liiga)

GP13, GAA 2.92, SVS%881

Up Henri Kiviaho has generally had an okay season. He was backup for most of the past season and got a chance to play more games regularly later on in the season. He did play more games in the Jr A than he did in the SM-Liiga but with him likely playing in the SM-Liiga next season I choose those statistics. He signed a one year extension with KalPa but has yet to sign an ELC with Dallas meaning that they could lose his rights. Kiviaho has shown himself to have some potential but there are still plenty of question marks. He had a bad team in front of him which may explain a poor save percentage. This one was a bordering even for me but he has spent plenty of time this season in the SM-Liiga.
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