The HockeyAllsvenskan regular season came to a close yesterday, and with a complete season’s worth of data comes several areas of analysis to unpack.
The first area I decided to look into was the players who made the biggest strides statistically in the second half of the season compared to the first half.
In addition to being a competitive league, HockeyAllsvenskan is also a development-focused league, so naturally I wanted to find the players who showed the most signs of improvement over the course of the season. To do so, I split the season into two 26 game halves, filtered to players who played a minimum of 15 games in each half, and evaluated their development in three areas: 1) ice time per game, 2) points per game, and 3) shots on goal per game.
Some of the standout names on this list, like Ludvig Larsson and Viktor Lodin, will not be a surprise to those who have followed HockeyAllsvenskan. Others though, are players perhaps more subtly on the upswing who could be of interest to SHL teams next year at this time.
Here are 13 forwards who, with a couple small exceptions, saw increases across the board in their ice time, point production, and shot production in the second half of the season. (The table is sorted in order of the largest point per game increases.)
I won’t go through every player above, but a few thoughts that jump out:
Larsson and Lodin have rightfully received a lot of attention lately, but I did not realize Lukas Wernblom was right there with them in the second half (and had a more productive first half then them both). Wernblom of course was a frequent linemate of Larsson’s and that’s a factor here, but Wernblom’s production given his age and pedigree makes it likely he’ll be a big prize for SHL teams next year at this time.
Felix Olsson and Jonatan Harju's seasons went a bit under the radar relative to Anton Svensson’s, but they both had big second halves and are right in the middle of their primes. It’s probably too early for them to be eyeing the SHL at this point, but they’ve set themselves on that path in the near future.
David Karlström picked up some late season Guldgallret buzz, and I can see why. As the youngest player on this list, he was a half a point per game player in roughly third line minutes over the second half.
Judging defesemen statistically is always trickier, especially when these categories primarily focus on individual production at one end of the rink. That said, here are 10 defensemen who made clear strides in the second half.
Filip Roos’ physical tools have always jumped out, and they all translated on the statline, especially in the second half. At the SHL level, he might not be in a position to play over 20 minutes per night and get the power play opportunities he did with Karlskoga, but his performance this year means he’s ready for the next step in his development.
Filip Hasa made significant leaps in the second half, playing four and a half more minutes per game and doubling his point and shot production in the process.
Isak Pantzare and Isac Heens' seasons were a bit anonymous up in Mora, but their role and output increased throughout the season, and they actually averaged the most ice time among Mora defensemen who played a full season.
Like I said in the intro, not everyone on here is a star in HockeyAllsvenskan or even close to one. But they are all trending upward, and some are already ticketed for the SHL. For those that aren’t, I’ll be keeping closer attention on them next season to see if they can maintain or exceed their second half performance this year.