11 for 6: Mikael Granlund

Name: Mikael Granlund
Position: Center
Shoots: Left
Height: 5.10
Weight: 180
Born: 2/26/92, Oulu, Finland
Last Team: HIFK (FIN)
Rankings: CSS 1 (European Skaters), ISS 14 (Skaters), RLR 3 (Overall), THN 10 (Overall)

2009-2010 Statistics:
HIFK (FIN), 43 GP, 13-27-40, +11, 2 PIM
HIFK (FIN) Playoffs, 6 GP, 1-5-6, +1, 0 PIM
Finland (U20 WJC), 6 GP, 1-6-7, -4, 4 PIM
Finland (U18 WJC), 6 GP, 4-9-13, E, 4 PIM

Like Skinner, we at BoltProspects suspect there is a lot of late upward movement in the draft stock of Finland’s Mikael Granlund that isn’t being picked up by many in the media and we suspect he’s a solid top ten pick. Despite scoring an unheard of 40 points in 43 games in the SM-liiga at seventeen and eighteen years old, many teams downgraded Granlund because of a pedestrian performance at the U20 World Junior Championships where he had 1 goal and 7 points in 6 games. We find it hard to believe that an over point-a-game pace in a tournament where most of the other players are one to two years older could be considered pedestrian, but that was what was depressing Granlund’s value. All that changed at the U18 tournament in Belarus, though, where Granlund dominated to the tune of 4 goals and 13 points in 6 games. Evidently an over two points-a-game pace was more to the scouting community’s liking. Granlund has been universally compared to former Canadiens captain Saku Koivu in that he’s small and doesn’t have top end speed but he’s a fierce and smart competitor. Granlund’s hockey sense and vision are off the charts and he could go as high as third overall when all is said and done. He's a pure playmaker who might be a natural setup man to some of the Lightning's potential young finishers like Johan Harju and Carter Ashton. He’d be a good fit for the Lightning, which needs more playmakers in the system, and if the club could get around Granlund’s compulsory military commitments in Finland, they could try to start the forward’s pro development in Norfolk of the AHL right away.

Previous Prospect Profiles:
11 for 6: G, Jack Campbell
11 for 6: D, Cam Fowler
11 for 6: D, Erik Gudbranson
11 for 6: D, Brandon Gormley
11 for 6: C, Alex Burmistrov
11 for 6: RW, Brett Connolly
11 for 6: LW, Nino Neiderreiter
11 for 6: C/RW, Jeff Skinner
11 for 6: RW, Vladimir Tarasenko