Smooth skating Philip Broberg is number five overall in our Top 25 Under 25.
Let’s check out how the panel voted.
Philip Broberg debuted at 5th overall in our Top 25 last year. He remains at 5 this year. That’s not a slight to Broberg, who is one of the best skaters in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. There’s every reason to believe he’ll climb those ranks in the coming years.
Broberg was drafted eighth overall in 2019. A left-shot blueliner from Sweden, he certainly can move like the wind. I had the pleasure of writing up Broberg in his 2019 Top 25, much of which continues to ring true. Broberg is an effective two-way defenceman who is responsible in his own end, but is eager to join the rush up ice. He can skate effortless in any direction, and It’s that much more exciting when the players on the other team look like pylons when it happens. He’s effective at battling the puck along the boards, he continues to work on puck handling and his shot.
Broberg is an exciting player to watch. He might be our Top 25’s most exciting player outside of the player at number one. .
I’ll let you guess who that is. No spoilers.
HLINKA-GRETZKY CUP, WJC
Broberg got to lay out the total package at the Hlinka-Gretzky Cup. His strides looked effortless and he’s got excellent hockey acumen. He’s able to disengage the opposition as they enter the zone, and he’s got no trouble bringing the puck up ice once a threat has been disabled. A member of the bronze winning Swedish club at the 2019-20 World Juniors, Broberg continued to show what made him eighth overall in the 2019 Entry Draft.
But seriously: the skating. Take a damp towel and pat your forehead.
2019-20: SKELLEFTEA, THEN INTO THE BUBBLE
In 2019-20, Broberg opted not to play with Niagara in the OHL and instead was loaned to Skelleftea. Oilers General Manager Ken Holland was impressed enough with Broberg that Broberg got an invite when the Oilers bubbled up for the Return-To-Play protocols in July. He would play eleven minutes of an exhibition game against the Calgary Flames prior to the play-in series, a little more than now former-Oiler Matt Benning. Talk was hot and heavy that Broberg had already passed Evan Bouchard on the depth chart based on what had been seen. Maybe we hold it there for a few minutes, but arrows are definitely pointing up.
Broberg’s entry-level deal was signed shortly after being drafted. Having played in Sweden last season, his contract will slide to this season. If he stays in Sweden as I suspect he will this year, his first season in North America will be 2021-22. How fast he moves up the depth chart after he’s here is anyone’s guess, though I suspect it won’t take too long.