Oscar Fisker Mølgaard is a two-way centreman the Leafs may select at 28th overall
Photo credit:Axel Boberg/Bildbyrån
3 months ago
Although the Leafs won’t be making their first selection until 28th overall, there is still plenty of value to be had late in round one. Look no different than how they were able to select Rasmus Sandin one spot later in 2018.
We continue my ongoing series of deep dives on players that the Leafs may look at selecting leading up to the 2023 Draft later this month. Our attention shifts over to the SHL where we find a forward turning some heads.
Oscar Fisker Mølgaard is a Danish centreman who is currently playing for HV71 of the Swedish Hockey League. That’s right, he was a player that got to play in one of the best hockey leagues in Europe and was a mainstay in the lineup by Christmas. The 18-year-old has a good height of 6’0″ while also being a bit lightweight at 163 pounds, so bulking up on muscle will certainly be a focus of his once he gets drafted.
Mølgaard is not a flashy player and won’t impress you with highlight-reel moves or dynamic vision with the puck. Rather, his best attributes as a player are his attention to detail and being an effective player in all areas of the ice. He excels in his own end as a play disruptor, keeping pace with the defensive rotations, and constantly scanning for threats to score. Offensively, he is good at creating space that allows his linemates room to work their magic, can get the puck to an area under pressure, and does well at puck retrievals. His seven points in 41 games last season may not seem impressive at first glance, but keep in mind he is playing in one of the top leagues across the pond and those point totals are second among first-time draft-eligible players in the SHL behind only Leo Carlsson.
The reason why Mølgaard is projected to be taken late in the first round is the low ceiling in regard to his current offensive skill set. As I mentioned earlier, it is not part of his game because what helps him stand out is all of the little things he does well. That’s not to say he has zero skill offensively, but he tends to prefer setting up plays rather than beating defenders one-on-one. He is not a player that possesses a lethal shot or the elusive skillset that players higher up the draft rankings have, so don’t expect him to crack many highlight-reel films anytime soon.
Still, there is a quality player to be had here that projects to be a middle-six centre should his development run smoothly. Mølgaard plays a solid two-way game that will make him an active contributor in all situations, which will bode well in improving his chances of cracking an NHL lineup. The fact he already has got a long look in the SHL and represented Team Denmark at both the World Juniors and World Hockey Championship says a lot about how well his development has gone thus far.
What the scouts are saying
Ranked #28 by ELITEPROSPECTS.COM
Ranked #40 by FCHOCKEY
Ranked #47 by DAILY FACEOFF
Ranked #46 by MCKEEN’S HOCKEY
Ranked #40 by TSN/CRAIG BUTTON
Ranked #26 by DOBBERPROSPECTS
Ranked #28 by SMAHT SCOUTING
Steven Ellis, DailyFaceoff: “Mølgaard didn’t produce much in the SHL, but the fact that a 2005-born played more than 40 games against some of the best competition in Europe is nothing to sneeze at. He was excellent against U-20 competition, and, honestly, the smart, controlled center could end up becoming one of the biggest steals of the draft given his pro-ready tools.”
Scott Wheeler, The Athletic: “A Danish prospect, Mølgaard played 41 games in the SHL this season with HV71 (where he averaged just under 10 minutes per game and occasionally pushed 15 or 16 minutes) and led the Division 1A U18 Worlds in goals, assists, points, and plus-minus as the tournament’s top forward award winner to help Denmark to a silver medal and nearly promotion into the top flight. Mølgaard plays a driven, hard-working game that blends above-average skill with strong skating to push tempo, get after it, and make quick plays and decisions with the puck. His skill isn’t flashy but he plays to positive results, drives results, and projects as an everyday centre.”
Sebastian High, Dobber Prospects: Fisker Mølgaard is an intelligent, intense, and strong defensive forward who finds soft ice in the offensive zone and has an array of refined professional habits, his ceiling will be determined by just how much his offensive tools can be developed.
Tony Ferrari, The Hockey News: O.F.M. is an incredibly smart player who’s begun to incorporate his speed and hands in a way that has made him a dangerous player at the junior and men’s levels in Sweden. He jumped over to Sweden in his draft-minus-one season after playing at home in Demark growing up. Fisker Molgaard understands how to play an effective defensive game, using his quickness to pressure puck carriers and win races to loose pucks. His offensive game has grown over the course of the season in the SHL. His playmaking has always been a strength thanks to his vision and ability to read the ice, but his shot has become more effective as the year wore on.
Mølgaard may not have the offensive ceiling of players like Carlsson or Connor Bedard, but his current skillset will go a long way in helping him become an effective middle-six forward at the NHL level. A player who is strong at both ends of the ice having already seen an extended period of time in one of Europe’s top leagues and represented his country numerous times this year says a lot about his development.
Should he remain available once it is Toronto’s turn, they will be incredibly happy to add a player of his skillset into their prospect pool. He won’t impress you with flashy moves or elite snipes, but his attention to detail and reliable play at both ends is something that any team will get excited about acquiring.
Regardless of how much higher the Leafs can push his offensive ceiling, they will have done well if they have Mølgaard in their system by the time the first round wraps up.
Stats from Elite Prospects.
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