The Buffalo Sabres have drafted and developed a number of youngsters currently playing in the NHL (Rasmus Dahlin, Owen Power, Dylan Cozens), and the club under former GM Jason Botterill and current GM Kevyn Adams have been able to replenish the organization with young prospects. Throughout the month of August and leading into training camp next month, we will rank the club’s top prospects over the upcoming weeks based on their progress in either the NCAA, CHL, Europe, ECHL, or AHL and their potential to make the Sabres roster and make a contribution in the future. Players are eligible for the list if they have not played more than 40 NHL games and are 25 years old or younger:
#21 Mats Lindgren
The Sabres had 11 picks at the 2022 NHL Draft in Montreal. After selecting centers Matthew Savoie, Noah Ostlund, and Jiri Kulich with their three first-round picks, they chose goalie Topias Leinonen in the second round, five forwards, and two defensemen on Day 2. After selecting players from Europe with four straight picks, Buffalo selected defenseman Mats Lindgren from the WHL’s Kamloops Blazers.
The Vancouver, BC native is the son of former NHLer Mats Lindgren (who played seven seasons with Edmonton, New York, and Vancouver) and had 44 points (5 goals, 39 assists) for the Blazers in his draft year. The 19-year-old was dealt to the Red Deer Rebels prior to last season and took a step back offensively (34 points in 63 games), but increased his goal total to 11.
Red Deer has been bringing LHD Mats Lindgren low into the slot on the PP. He hit paydirt last night with nine seconds left to force OT in the Rebels' 4-3 loss to Saskatoon. pic.twitter.com/Bj2z13vcZ2
— Kris Baker (@SabresProspects) December 3, 2022
Hockey Prospect’s Black Book regards Lindgren as a “highly intelligent, two-way defenseman….with a high-level of talent who can do anything he wants with the puck and/or skate circles around other junior players…..and plays the game on his toes in all three zones…he makes his presence felt on both sides of the puck.”
The clock is ticking more so on Lindgren than some of the Sabres European prospects since he was selected out of the CHL and has to be signed to an entry-level contract before next June. Based on his pedigree, he should be someone that Buffalo is anxious to sign and give more time to see what he becomes.