Swedes Cautious With Berggren
The Swedish national junior team is exercising a cautious with Detroit prospect Jonatan Berggren during this week’s World Junior Summer Showcase at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Mich.
Berggren sat out Sunday’s game against USA White. The right-winger tweaked his knee late in Saturday’s 4-2 loss to USA Blue but that wasn’t why he was a scratch on Sunday.
Berggren’s Swedish club team Skelleftea asked the national squad to initially go easy with Berggren, out of action since suffering a back injury last November.
“I talked to Skelleftea about his (back) injury and being away and I promised them that he’s not going to play back to back in the start (of the tournament),” Swedish coach Tomas Monten explained. “I know we play back to back Friday-Saturday, so we’ll see. We’ll evaluate then. But we didn’t want to play him two games straight up.
“We’re going to give him two days off and them we’ll see. Hopefully, he can come back.”
Monten could see signs of rust in Berggren’s performance.
“This game today was his first game since November,” Monten said. “Coming back and playing these guys I think was pretty tough. This is a pretty high-paced game early in the season.
“I don’t think he managed to make plays and couldn’t play at the same speed that the US did. I think it was a good game going forward.”
Overall, the coach likes what he’s seen from the 5-foot-8, 170-pound winger.
“In practice I think he’s been looking good,” Monten said. “He’s strong on the puck, He creates plays.
“We would like him to shoot more, to be like the finisher.”
Others involved in the tournament like what they’ve witnessed from Berggren on the ice .
“He’s very dynamic,” said Red Wings prospect Joe Veleno, here with the Canadian team. “He’s crafty with the puck. He makes plays at high speed. He knows where to find guys on the ice and he’s very talented.
“He kind of seems a little bit like Johnny Gaudreau in the way he plays and his style. He’s gonna be a really good player. He’s quick and I guess the game in the NHL now is all about speed, quickness and skill, so he’s pretty much there.”
Former Red Wings defenseman Arnie Brown died Saturday. He was 77 years old.
Brown played with the Wings during the 1970-71 and 1971-72 NHL seasons. He spent the majority of his career with the New York Rangers and also saw action with the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Islanders and Atlanta Flames.
Brown played his final two pro seasons in the WHA and began his final pro campaign in 1974-75 with Detroit’s other brief major-league hockey team, the Michigan Stags.
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