Buffalo Sabres Select Elias Lindholm With The Eighth Overall Pick

With the 8th overall pick in the 2013 NHL Fansided Mock Draft, the Buffalo Sabres pick Elias Lindholm of  Brynas IF in Elitserien.

In a truly democratic process, the fans at Sabre Noise decided upon Lindholm, selecting him over players such as Aleksander Barkov and Darnell Nurse, both of whom were still available at the time our poll started.

Lindholm, the number three prospect on Central Scouting’s ranking of European players, has been  projected to go no lower than 8th in the draft, and as high as 4th in some 2013 NHL draft prospect rankings.  This past season, he spent his first full year in the Swedish Elite League skating for Brynas, and his 30 points (11 goals and 19 assists) in 48 games led all junior players in the Elitserien.  Lindholm also played for the Swedish U20 team that won a silver medal at the U20 World Junior Championship, notching 2 goals and 2 assists.

So what do Sabres fans see in Lindholm?  For starters, they see a potentially deadly offensive weapon to add to the Sabres arsenal, a second- or even first-line center who CBS Sports called “one of the best playmakers in this draft year . . . a crafty player who makes everyone around him better.”    In 2012-2013, the Sabres’ offense was ranked number 22 in the NHL, scoring an average of 2.46 goals per game.  A major concern heading into the season was the Sabres’ lack of quality depth at center, and based on the regular season results, the Sabres should still be concerned.   With the exception of Cody Hodgson, none of the centers currently on the roster ranked among the top 30 centers in the NHL, and Tyler Ennis was the only Sabres’ center who tallied more than 20 assists over the course of the season.  The Sabres don’t simply need goal scorers; they need players who can score and create opportunities for the other players around them, and that is exactly the sort of promise Lindholm carries with him.

For more on Lindholm, check out what Hockey’s Future had to say about him, and then check out some of his highlights below:

Lindholm is an extremely talented player who is already an important offensive contributor for his top men’s league team. Possesses incredible hands, stickhandling skills and passing capabilities for a player his age. Displays well above-average ability to read and understand the game. Elias is strong at side-stepping checks and interpreting where opponents intend to pass or where they plan on skating, taking advantage of this to often pick off passes or hold up opposing skaters. Makes wonderful use of the ice and is strong in transition.

Topics: 2013 Nhl Entry Draft, Buffalo Sabres, Elias Lindholm

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  • Kevin

    Sounds like a great pick, I see at at 6′ 188 the kid has some beefing up to do. Sabres really could use a “Playmaker” at the center position. They are rare, and if we can snatch one up its a great pick. Great piece Rich.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Thanks Kevin! The fans spoke and voted for him. I’m sure we all would love to see the Sabres get someone like Nichuskin, but Lindholm has a ton of upside.

  • Duncan

    To me after MacKinnon, and Drouin, Lindholm is probably the best playmaker in this years draft, he won’t put up 50 goal seasons but, like you said in the article, he will make everyone around him better.

  • Bryan Thomas

    Uhh who’s taking Lindholm over Barkov? Nobody I know.. As it stands, he’ll be off the board way before #8. It’d be organizational genocide to take Lindholm if Barkov is still available (which he won’t).

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      I’m pretty sure the only reason anyone here picked Lindholm over Barkov is because everyone knew that Barkov would get picked up in the mock draft. Lindholm certainly has a lot of upside, though, so it’s not like he is a huge step down from Barkov.

  • Matt Nolan

    We shud move up from 16 to four for barkov or to one w Mackinnon unload for that hold on to 8 hope for lindholm or nucheshkin I like nucheshkin big powerful forward tho lindholm looks good too I think armia barkov would be awesome as would grigorenko nucheshkin tho if they stay at 8 and pick lindholm I hope Erne is avail at 16

    • bullwinkle88

      good grief!

  • bullwinkle88

    No! Depending upon who is available of course, I would prefer Monahan over Lindholm and certainly Nichushkin. But we would need to move up in the draft to get either of those two.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      I think Lindholm is good for an 8th pick. Monahan and Nichuskin are almost guaranteed to go before 8th, so you’re right: the Sabres wold need to try to slide down into the 5th slot to land one of those guys.

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