Harju finishes the regular season in style...
Harju still riding high...
A one game scoring explosion propels "Big Joe" to new heights...
Harju pots his 20th goal of the season.
Johan Harju scored a pair of power play goals as Lulea knocked off MODO 4-2.
Andreas Holmqvist had an assist in Djurgardens' 3-1 victory over Rogle.
Janne Niskala was scoreless in Frolunda's 3-2 win over Farjestads.
Janne Niskala was scoreless in Frolunda's 3-1 win over MODO.
Johan Harju had Lulea's only goal in a 3-1 loss to Rogle.
Andreas Holmqvist had 2 penalty minutes in Djurgardens' 4-1 loss to Farjestads.
Harju is now tied for 7th in the Elitserien with 31 points in 35 games. His 19 goals this season are tops in the league; three more than Martin Thornberg of HV71, Per-Age Skroder of MODO, and Niko Dimitrakos of Skelleftea. He is also first in the Elitserien in power play goals with 9; one ahead of Johan Davidsson of HV71 and Kent McDonnell of Skelleftea.
But will the Lightning be able to bring Harju to North America next season?
Andreas Holmqvist did not play in Djurgardens' 3-2 win over Farjestads.
Janne Niskala was scoreless in Frolunda's 2-1 win over Sodertalje.
Janne Niskala had an assist in Frolunda's 4-2 win over Brynas.
Johan Harju was scoreless in Lulea's 2-1 win over Skelleftea.
Janne Niskala had two power play goals in Frolunda's 4-3 overtime loss to Timra.
Johan Harju had a power play goal in Lulea's 3-2 overtime loss to Djurgardens. Andreas Holmqvist did not play.
Johan Harju had two penalty minutes in Lulea's 2-1 win over Sodertalje.
Janne Niskala was scoreless in Frolunda's 2-0 loss to Skelleftea.
Andreas Holmqvist did not play in Djurgardens' 3-3 tie with Brynas.
Harju is en fuego.
Johan Harju had a power play assist in Lulea's 3-2 overtime loss to Timra.
Andreas Holmqvist was scoreless in Djurgardens' 4-3 loss to Rogle.
Janne Niskala had 2 penalty minutes in Frolunda's 2-0 win over Farjestads.
Johan Harju had a power play goal in Lulea's 3-3 tie with Brynas.
Johan Harju had a goal in Lulea's 1-1 tie with HV 71.
Andreas Holmqvist had a goal and an assist, both on the power play, in Djurgardens' 4-2 win over Timra.
Janne Niskala was scoreless in Frolunda's 5-0 win over Rogle. In 5 games so far with the club, Niskala has 1 goal and 3 points with 4 penalty minutes and a +3 rating.
At one time the Lightning's scouts touted Holmqvist's offensive skills as already up to NHL caliber. Holmqvist is a talented puck mover with a cannon shot from the point. He has already established himself as one of the most dangerous power play point men in Sweden. He is also a good skater once he gets up to speed and has a long 6'4" frame.
Holmqvist's defensive zone presence when he was in North America was reminiscent of a deer in headlights. His decision making in his third of the rink was poor and although he is 6'4" he lacks upper body strength and can be overpowered by smaller players. Also, his first step acceleration is poor.
Rarely do prospects who go back to Europe ever return to North America to contribute to the organization that holds their rights, and in Holmqvist's case the pattern will likely hold. The Lightning were no doubt stung after handing Holmqvist a very significant contract to play in the ECHL one year and be a third pairing AHL defenseman in the next. Still, Andreas has done almost everything you could ask of an expatriate prospect. He had a solid season in the Elitserien, worked his way onto the Euro Tour team for Sweden and got a spot on the World Championships team. If he continues to improve his game over the next couple of seasons and uses those international tournaments as his platform he might, at minimum, gain the Lightning some trade attention from other teams.
Johan Harju had an assist in Lulea's 5-3 win over Rogle.
Andreas Holmqvist had an assist in Djurgardens' 4-3 loss to MODO.
Johan Harju was scoreless in Lulea's 3-2 win over MODO.
Johan Harju had a goal in Lulea's 3-1 win over Linkopings.
Andreas Holmqvist had 2 penalty minutes in Djurgardens' 2-2 tie with Skelleftea.
Andreas Holmqvist was scoreless in Djurgardens' 4-2 loss to Brynas.
Johan Harju had an assist in Lulea's 1-1 tie with HV 71.
Lightning Prospect Elitserien Stats Through 11/18:
Johan Harju, Lulea, 22 GP, 7-9-16, 16 PIM, +4
Andreas Holmqvist, Frolunda/Djurgardens, 16 GP, 4-8-12, 18 PIM, -2
Harju is tied for 15th in the Elitserien in scoring. Holmqvist is tied for 6th in the league in scoring among defensemen, once his combined statistics between Frolunda and Djurgardens are considered.
Lulea has now risen to 7th on the Elitserien table. Djurgardens sits in 10th.