After struggling in his first professional season in North America, goaltender Oscar Dansk is heading to Sweden for the 2015-16 season.
Dansk, originally a second-round pick (31st overall) by the Columbus Blue Jackets at the 2012 NHL Draft, spent the 2014-15 season between the AHL’s Springfield Falcons and ECHL’s Kalamazoo Wings.
“I got away from my game a little bit because I felt like I wasn’t playing really well, so (I) tried to find a solution,” Dansk told The Columbus Dispatch. “I maybe should have just built on my game and made it stronger. I got away from my game, which probably hurt me in the long run.”
In 21 AHL games Dansk went 7-7-5 with a 3.57 G.A.A. and a .880 save percentage. The 21-year-old was 1-8-0 while posting a 3.73 G.A.A. and a .889 save percentage in 11 games with Kalamazoo.
“He didn’t have a great season in Springfield, so there was some concern,” said Blue Jackets’ goaltending coach Ian Clark. “Sometimes he slips mentally and starts to overcompensate, but when he’s strong in his game and he’s trusting in his game, he’s a very good goaltender. We’ve got to get rid of those fluctuations where his mind flips. His core assets are real strong.”
Dansk will play next season on loan to Rogle BK, a first-division Swedish League team.
“I’m just going to work every day,” he said. “I have a schedule with fewer games over in Sweden, so I’ll have more time in practices to really nail down a few things and just take my time and not rush into things.”
The Columbus Blue Jackets have already lost prospect goaltender Oscar Dansk who decided to sign in the Swedish Hockey League earlier this week.
According to Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch, the Jackets are now in danger of losing Peter Quenneville.
GM Jarmo Kekalainen tells Portzline the Jackets are still uncertain about signing the forward.
If Quenneville isn’t signed by June 1, he is eligible to go back into this year’s draft.
The 21-year-old has spent parts of two seasons with the Brandon Wheat Kings of the Western Hockey League after leaving Quinnipiac University during the 2013-14 season. He had 27 goals and 75 points in 72 games this season.
Quenneville, who is the second cousin of Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville and nephew of Islanders’ defenseman Johnny Boychuk by marriage, was the seventh round selection of the Jackets (195th overall) in 2013.
Rasmus Ristolainen’s golden goal in overtime gave Finland a 3-2 victory against rival Sweden and their first World Junior Championships gold medal since 1998.
Ristolainen, a 2013 Buffalo Sabres first-round pick, pinched in deep to deke and beat Swedish goalie, and Blue Jackets prospect, Oscar Dansk for the game-winner. Blackhawks prospect Teuvo Teravainen assisted on all three Finnish goals.
Here’s video of the game-winner. Enjoy the Finnish call of the game.
Celebrating victory gets weird when you’re in Sweden though as Ristolainen shows in this GIF courtesy of CJZero.
Pippi Longstocking wigs are so in, you guys. It’s a Swedish thing so that’s just super.
It turned out to be a good tournament for fans of the Sabres and Nashville Predators. Swedish forward Filip Forsberg was named MVP of the tournament as well as Best Forward and was one of the tourney’s all-stars up front. Teravainen and Red Wings prospect Anthony Mantha were also named to the all-star team.
Ristolainen won the award for Best Defenseman and he along with Russian defenseman Nikita Zadorov were named to the tournament’s all-star team as was Finnish goalie and Predators prospect Juuse Saros.
Next year’s tournament moves to Canada where it’ll be held in Toronto and Montreal. With Canada not winning a medal the past two years and not having won gold in five years, the pressure will be on.
It’s a bit early to start getting excited about the 2013 World Junior Championships set to take place in Russia, but the time to evaluate the talent is now.
The WJC evaluation camp featuring Team USA, Sweden, and Finland kicked off their week of action in Lake Placid, NY today. During the week, the teams will practice and face off against each other in scrimmages and the amount of future NHL talent on display this year is hefty.
Chris Peters at the United States of Hockey previewed the camp extensively and highlighting the Americans group of talent are 2012 third overall pick Alex Galchenyuk (Montreal) and potential 2013 top pick defenseman Seth Jones (pictured).
I’ve written about Jones here after seeing him in last year’s camp as a 16 year-old. Seeing how the son of former NBA player “Popeye” Jones has improved in a year is virtually worth the price of gas to get there.
Joining Galchenyuk and Jones for the USA will be a handful of other 2012 first-round picks in Jacob Trouba (Winnipeg), Jordan Schmaltz (St. Louis), Henrik Samuelsson (Phoenix), Brady Skjei (Rangers), and Stefan Matteau (New Jersey).
Sweden and Finland aren’t slacking off either as the Swedes will have 2012 draftees Filip Forsberg (Washington), Oscar Dansk (Columbus), Pontus Aberg (Nashville), and Hampus Lindholm (Anaheim). They’ll also have some highly touted 2011 picks in Mika Zibanejad (Ottawa) and Oscar Klefbom (Edmonton) as well.
The Finns will counter with 2012 picks Teuvo Teravainen (Chicago) and Olli Maatta (Pittsburgh) and Sabres 2011 first-round pick Joel Armia who was impressive last year in WJC camp.
PHT will be in Lake Placid this week providing observations of Team USA’s games against both Sweden and Finland on August 8 and 9.