Swedish league standout Simon Hjalmarsson signs with Blue Jackets

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The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed forward Simon Hjalmarsson to a one-year, two-way contract, per the Columbus Dispatch.

Hjalmarsson was taken in the second round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft by the St. Louis Blues, but he didn’t end up making the move to North America while he was under their control. Instead he continued to play in the Swedish league and has established himself as one of their top players.

The 25-year-old forward had 57 points and 87 penalty minutes in 55 games while playing for Linkopings HC in 2013-14.

Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen was the director of scouting in St. Louis when the Blues took him, which helped convince Hjalmarsson that Columbus was a good fit for him.

The Chicago Blackhawks were also reportedly interested in his services, per the Blue Jackets’ Rob Mixer. To address the obvious question that stems from that though, no, he’s not related to Blackhawks defenseman Niklas Hjalmarson.