Toronto Maple Leafs Draft Sondre Olden 79th Overall

The Toronto Maple Leafs selected Sondre Olden of Modo's junior team 79th overall. They traded the Los Angeles Kings a third round pick in 2012 for the privilege. The NHL.com stream is painful because the commentors are talking non-stop and the pace of the selections means that it is hard to keep up with the action. However, in this case, they offered up what sounds like a good explanation. The Leafs moved up two spots ahead of Detroit in order to select Olden on the heavy recommendation of European scout Thommie Bergman who they were unanimous in lauding.

Obviously, as with most picks, we don't know much but we know Olden has at least one super fan:

 

Olden is obviously a project pick. He is from Norway which traditionally is not a producer of NHLers. They have only put four in the NHL....ever. However, Olden is plying his trade for Modo (Great!) in the junior league (darn) now. This is a long-term pick. I would bet that he's more likley to stay in the Modo system for at least a year or two before being brought to Canada rather than trying to get him into the CHL. The fact that Bergman thought enough of him to ask gives me some hope as do the good words from Hakan Andersson.

Elite Prospects

A lanky and offensively skilled forward with surprisingly quick feet. Olden is a creative player with good hockey sense and strong technical skills. A pretty productive player, that thrives on the pp unit, that will put up points on the board, but also contribute defensively. Has, however, some inconsistency issues and must bulk up.

Hockey Forum

Like Hakan Andersson, Sondre Olden really interests me. He's 6'4", can line up at any forward position and his skill set has been impressing on MoDo's J20 team. He's quite skilled technically, with good puck control and is a very good skater for his size, as well as being reliable in terms of offensive output. Even though he's underweight at this time, he's still only 17.

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