24-Year-Old Defenseman – Edmonton Oilers
Oscar Klefbom Contract Information:
Signed a seven-year, $29.169 million contract extension with the Oilers in September 2015.
Klefbom led the Oilers with seven shots in a 1-0 loss to the Maple Leafs.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
A broken finger and an infection in his leg limited Klefbom to just 30 games last season, but the young blueliner showed plenty of promise in that time. His 12 points put the Swede on pace for 33 over a full season, and he led all Oilers in ice time at 21:53 per game. He’ll likely pair with countryman Adam Larsson to form one of the league’s most promising young defensive duos, and Klefbom has the higher fantasy ceiling of the two thanks to his more developed offensive game.
Klefbom has only just begun to scratch the surface on a very bright future. He had a solid 20 points in 60 games in 2014-15, but like most of his mates, his plus/minus was horrific (minus-21). A new coach in Todd McLellan and potentially, a new partner in Andrej Sekera, should bring both stability and opportunity to Klefbom’s game. He could be the next Hampus Lindholm, who’s been pretty valuable inside a structured system in Anaheim. He won’t have the pressure of power-play time, and that’ll give him a chance to consolidate some things in his game. His value really lies a few years in the future.
Like Darnell Nurse, Klefbom is one of top defenseman prospects for the Oilers and the entire NHL, for that matter. He finally got his feet wet with the Oilers last season by appearing in 17 games and tallying his first NHL goal. In order for the Oilers to take the next step as a team, they will need young players like Klefbom to mature quickly. Is he ready to take that next step? That's probably not a fair question for a player who has yet to play a full season in the NHL, but that's the problem in this day and age -- few organizations have any patience. Klefbom does project to be a top-four defenseman over time, but this season will be all about learning the nuances of the game. He'll likely ride the shuttle between the NHL and AHL all season, and probably see around 25 games in the Oil Patch. But that's not enough for fantasy relevance in single-season leagues.
This 20-year old is one of the top prospects in the Oilers system. He has played the past several seasons in Sweden and will make his North American debut in the AHL this year. He has everything you could want in a d-man -- size, shot and vision, and is good in both ends of the ice. The Oilers may be weak on defense, but Klefbom could be a big part of the answer to their problems as soon as 2014-15.
Klefbom has yet to play in North America as he has spent the last two seasons in the Swedish Elite League. He is one of the Oilers' top prospects on defense, a position they are desperate for talent. His offensive talents haven't really shown up yet, but he is projected to be the type of defender that could be a power-play quarterback. Keeper leaguers need to know his name.
Klefbom was the Oilers' second pick (19th overall) in the first round of the 2011 draft. He is a power forward who can skate, but Klefbom will first need some seasoning in the AHL. When he's ready for the big time, he should mesh with the other young Oiler forwards.