Red Wings Prospect Pipeline Deep Dive: Albert Johansson

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In 2020-21, Albert Johansson proved that he’s one of the best defensive prospects in the Detroit Red Wings pipeline. Let’s examine Johansson’s skillset, progression and when he projects to become a member of the Wings’ main roster–which could hopefully someday see a pairing with Moritz Seider.

2021 Statline

Farjestad (Swedish Hockey League) 

Games Played: 44

Goals: 8

Assists: 11

Sweden U-20

Games Played: 5

Goals: 0

Assists: 3

Team Sweden

Games Played: 5

Goals: 1

Assists: 0

Measurables

Left Shot Defenseman

6-foot

168 Pounds

20-years-old

Scouting Report

Overshadowed by fellow Detroit defenseman prospect Moritz Seider, Johansson quietly had a fantastic year in the SHL with Farjestad.

Johansson was second in points among all defensemen under 20 in the Swedish Hockey League (right behind Seider), scoring 19 points (Eight goals and 11 assists) in 44 games.

Johansson proved his talent as a two-way defenseman in Sweden this year, finally producing with his solid offensive toolkit. He’s a top-tier skater: good north-to-south speed and impressive edgework. Johansson can make defenders look foolish by slicing through zone defense with complete control of the puck and slick skating. He excels on offensive transitions. With good passing skills as well, opponents are forced to keep on eye on Johansson’s teammates while simultaneously stopping the rush.

Johansson can also activate without the puck, finding himself open near the front of the net – a rare skill for a defenseman.

While Johansson might have some trouble transitioning his defense to a league like the NHL, his defense is decent. He makes offensive zone entries and possessions tough, using his speed and stick to make a forward’s life hard.

ETA: 2022-23

Johansson is close to the NHL. It was a bit surprising when it was announced that he would be returning to Farjestad in the SHL for another season, as some considered him ready to make the transition to North American ice with the Griffins in the AHL. It seems Steve Yzerman is looking for Johansson to improve his defensive abilities a bit more, becoming a more well-rounded prospect before heading to the U.S.

Unless 2021-22 is a majorly regressive season for Johansson, 2022-23 will very likely be his first year in the NHL. With the progression he’s already shown and another year to ripen in Sweden, Johansson will need very little – if any – time with Grand Rapids in the AHL. Like Seider, Johansson will probably be NHL right from the SHL.

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