Caps’ Johansson signs in Swedish second division

1 Comment

Washington Capitals winger Marcus Johansson has agreed to a lockout deal with Allsvenskan team BIK Karlskoga, according to the team website.

The move is a homecoming for the 22-year-old, who played with SEL club Farjestads at both the junior and senior levels before joining the Capitals in 2010.

Taken 24th overall at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, Johansson had a breakout campaign in Washington last season. He posted career highs in all categories — games played (80), goals (14), assists (32) and points (46) — and averaged over 16 minutes a night, often filling in as the Caps’ second-line center.

Big things are expected of the young Swede once the NHL season resumes. He could play on the top line alongside Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, or slide down to the second unit and play on newly-acquired Mike Ribeiro’s wing.

But until the work stoppage is over, Johansson will play in a Swedish second division bolstered a number of locked-out NHLers: Anze Kopitar, Jonathan Ericsson, Patrik Berglund, Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Read, Carl Hagelin, Douglas Murray and Patric Hornqvist, to name a few.

Johansson also becomes the sixth Cap to sign abroad, joining Ovechkin and Backstrom (KHL), Brooks Laich (Switzerland), Wojtek Wolski (Poland) and Michal Neuvirth (Czech Republic).