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European Report: Mid-playoffs update

A quick check with the players still on the ice.

2018 NHL Draft - Portraits
Filip Hållander looks nothing like this now.
Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

With the SHL, Liiga and Swiss playoffs all underway, it’s time for a quick update on the prospects.

If you find things confusing, all the leagues and acronyms and unusual concepts, check out the Glossary.

Drafted Prospects

Rodion Amirov

LW - 19 years old - shoots left - second pro year primarily in the KHL

Roni Hirvonen

C - 19 years old - shoots left - second pro year in Liiga

Hirvonen’s Liiga team did not make playoffs.

Topi Niemelä

D - 18 years old - shoots right - second year primarily in the Liiga

Niemelä returned from injury just in time for Kärpät’s wild card games to get into the playoffs. They won them both, so he gets at least one round of games.

Mikko Kokkonen

D - 20 years old - shoots left - fourth year pro, third in Liiga

Filip Hållander

W/C - 20 years old - shoots left - fourth pro year, third in SHL

Hållander’s SHL team is leading in their first round of the playoffs and he has two goals in five games played. If they win today, he’s through to the second round, and in the opposite semifinal to Pontus Holmberg.

Artur Akhtyamov

G - 19 years old - catches left - first pro year in KHL/VHL, will play some MHL

Akhtyamov played well through the VHL and MHL playoffs and is now done for the season.

Dmitri Ovchinnikov

F - 18 years old - shoots L - MHL, with some KHL appearances

Done for the season.

Axel Rindell

D - 20 years old - shoots R - second year pro in Liiga

Done for the season.

Semyon Kizimov

RW - 21 years old - shoots left - third year in VHL

Done for the season

Kalle Loponen

D - 19 years old - shoots right - in Finnish U20 after one OHL season

Loponen played very well in the MHL playoffs and is now a notch lower on the depth chart to be called up to the Liiga because of Niemelä’s return on the same team.

Eemeli Räsänen

D - 21 years old - shoots right - first year in Liiga after two in KHL

Done for the season.

Pontus Holmberg

W/C - 22 years old - shoots left - third SHL season

Holmberg isn’t merely in the SHL playoffs, he’s going for glory. In a sweep of their first round, Växjö dominated their opponent and Holmberg has two goals and four assists in four games.

While this epic level of scoring is in part due to the improved quality of the top two lines on the team, he’s a very good, disciplined player. This is like what happens if the Leafs third line is the one that can score because the top two lines have handled the other team for them.

Vladislav Kara

Winger/C - 22 years old - shoots left - fourth pro season, first full KHL season

Done for the season.

Denis Malgin

F - 24 years old - 5 years in NHL, loaned to Lausanne of NL

Malgin has played two games of his first round of the playoffs and has one goal and one assist, raising his points pace over his regular season rate by a hair. If the Leafs have no interest in him, he’ll find a job no problem.