It’s very easy to overlook Oliver Kylington based on his boxcar numbers but the resume is strong and the scouting report impressive. He arrived in the Swedish Hockey League at 16 and could be the best skating defender available at this summer’s draft. Oliver Kylington is a significant talent.


    • Gorab Stubb, NHL Director of European Scouting: “He’s a talented first-round prospect. He’s an excellent, smooth skater. He’s an
      offensive defenseman with excellent vision and playmaking skills. He has
      very good eye-to-hand coordination, is dangerous on the power play. He
      has all the tools needed and is a finesse-type player.”
    • Kelly Friesen, Buzzing the Net: Kylington dropped from CSS’ top International skater of the draft to
      sixth and third among defencemen. He remains an excellent skater who
      possesses top-end skill, but there are concerns surrounding his strength
      and at times he has had some positional issues. Source 
    • Uffe Bodin: “Smooth skating defenceman who is very efficient in transporting the
      puck up the ice. Very agile and athletic, but might be missing that
      extra hockey sense needed to become a force on the powerplay. Could
      become a good two-way defenceman in the NHL, maybe even a guy for a top
      four assignment.” Source
    • Craig Button, TSN (September): The smooth skating Kylington was a regular in the Swedish Hockey league
      as a 16 year old player. Skating ability is excellent with an ease that
      allows him to beat the fore-check, transition from defense to offense
      and to jump into the offensive forays. Very good passer and his vision
      and smarts makes him a multiple threat because he can beat you multiple
      ways. Reminds one of former NHLer & fellow Swede, Calle Johansson.Source
    • Kyle Woodlief, Red Line Report, February: Until recently, offensive Swedish defenseman Oliver Kylington was in the mix, but his horrid performance at this month’s Five Nations tournament in the Czech Republic scared the hell out of us, if we were a club picking in the five to eight range. Source


    It should be noted that the Five Nations Tournament mentioned above is another ‘small sample size’ tournament and sweeping statements based on that kind of event should be tempered (the longer view is the better plan).

    That said, Kylington does appear to be dropping in the rankings (Bob McKenzie had him No. 8 in pre-season and No. 11 halfway through the year, and Craig Button has him No. 29 on his latest list after having him No. 8 in January).


      I think Kylington may have been negatively impacted by the Five Nations and his spring performance but there’s every chance he’ll recover at the upcoming U18’s this week (Swedish roster here). Corey Pronman and Bob McKenzie will no doubt have their takes but I’d be surprised if either ranked Kylington outside the top 20 overall on their final lists.

      My guess is he’s gone by the time Pittsburgh’s choice (currently owned by Edmonton) is on the clock.


      • Parallex

        I hope he’s around when the Flames draft (And before anyone asks why I’m mentioning the Flames this is an all-Nations articule). Calgary needs some D prospects with significant upside and he just might be the highest upside d-man left when the Flames make their pick.

      • SmellOfVictory

        Strome, Crouse and Kylington would be very solid for the Oilers. Once the Euros are included in the draft rankings you can expect some of the mid range picks to drop slightly. With luck the Oilers can capitalize.

        • HardBoiledOil 1.0

          or how about Hanifin, Svechnikov or Harkins, and Blackwood? unless we actually sign UFA goalie Matt O’Connor, then we could take a guy like C Tom Novak or F Jens Looke or wingers like Nikita Korostelev or Christian Fischer, depending on who’s still there?

      • HardBoiledOil 1.0

        how good is he? so good that he has continued to drop from the top 10 earlier this year to the bottom 10 now. if he’s there, MAYBE? the Oilers should consider taking him if they don’t trade the pick away for a goalie, which they almost seem hell bent on doing, which seems stupid to me as there are likely other team’s backups that can be had for less!

      • Lofty

        If the Oil keep both first round picks, a center has to be taken as well as a Dman. I don’t see where anyone will be drafting a goalie in the first round.

        My concern with Kylington would be, if his mobility & feet are elite, and he excels on the puck, there should be better boxcars. Especially when you consider his limited size.

        3 assists for a puck mover? His TOI must be very low.

        The numbers don’t seem to add up.

        Good thing the Oil have a top notch scouting department (to not) figure these things out.

        • SmellOfVictory

          The SHL/Allsvenskan are not particularly good places for young dmen to put up numbers (or young players in general). In his draft year, Erik Karlsson had one point in seven games, followed by 10 in 45 in his draft+1 year (and 1 in 7 in Allsvenskan). Lidstrom had 2 points in 19 games in his draft year.

          Now there are guys like OEL and Hedman who produce reasonably well in those leagues at a young age, but low point totals don’t mean as much in the Swedish leagues as they do in North American ones.

        • HardBoiledOil 1.0

          i’d just keep the first 3 picks we have in the top 33 and take a center, d-man and goalie. then work out a trade for a goalie during the summer.

          • HardBoiledOil 1.0

            Better yet, sign Matt O’Connor and take 2 Dmen. Pilon out of Brandon at #33 and #20 Kylington. If we win draft lotto McDavid, if lose #3 Hanifin.

            I think that is a good days work. Rounding out what is out primary weakness, D and goaltanding.

            • HardBoiledOil 1.0

              i still feel that we already have a bunch of d-men wanting spots in the next few years, so why continue to load up on them? if we get Hanifin, it would be him, Nurse, Musil, Davidson, Simpson, LaLeggia, whomever else they sign/trade for.

              *in my opinion only*, we should take no more than 2 d-man this draft and concentrate on forwards and a goalie, unless we sign O’Connor, then perhaps with Brossoit as well, we don’t need to take a goalie? but our forward talent is really dry….we have big guys coming but only limited offensive production it looks like so far.

              • Parallex

                “why continue to load up on them?”

                Because prospects will break your hearts… they’ll bust and fall short of potential far more then they’ll meet even reasonable expectations. And if by some miracle you get more hits then you have any right to expect… well now you have a surplus of what is probably the most valuable trade commodity in the NHL… young Top 4 Defensemen.

              • HardBoiledOil 1.0

                ^and i don’t disagree, but i just don’t want the Oilers to go bananas on the d-men this draft when Klefbom and for now anyways, Marincin are already here and Nurse is on his way. if we were to take Hanifin, then i’d rather these 4 guys get the future available spots on the Oilers and not some 5th rounder. yes, you can still find quality d-men in later rounds like Davidson, but he and Musil and Simpson primarily are also looking for spots, so why go bonkers on taking more?

                if they took say Hanifin at #3, then 2 forwards or a forward and goalie with the next 2 picks, i’d be OK with that. we still apparently have a pick at the end of the 2nd round? if so, we can take another d-man there. but it’s really going to be up to the Oil to decide. just my opinion.

      • oilredemption

        Lowetide please do a “how good is Travis konecny” blog. That kid might not be the most skilled but he does everything right with the will power. In the Gallagher mold but a center and who couldn’t use a player like that.