Hockey Hello: Gustaf Westlund

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on April 12th, 2016 at 8:34 PM

Mentioned on the front page, but a hello is a hello.

Michigan Hockey will be getting a foreign import come September. 

Gustaf Westlund, born in Paris, France but from the country of Sweden, will come to Ann Arbor for the 2016-17 season.

 

Proud & honored to announce my commitment to play college hockey at @umichhockey thanks to everyone who has supported me #GoBlue

— Gustaf Westlund (@GustafWestlund) April 12, 2016

From SBN

After playing Tier II Midget during the fall season, the Swedish native made his first real impression on the myriad of NHL scouts and college coaches in attendance for Monday's Berkshire Jamboree. Playing center, he showed off his wheels. He's a tremendous skater who has a good first step and can really move around the sheet. It will be interesting to see how he continues to adjust to the style of play over here, but he's an athletic, raw talent that should be watched closely. A few NHL scouts were very high on him after seeing yesterday's games against Kent and Northwood.

 

Gustaf Westlund is an intriguing prospect as this was his first season playing in North America. The Parisian-born Swede came over to attend prep school in the U.S. and helped lead The Gunnery to a New England Prep School Elite Tournament Championship.

The left-shot center is a true athlete who oozes potential. He's also a very good soccer play, having played on the school's varsity team in the fall, which prevented him from playing Tier I in the split-season. He, instead, played for Yale Midget Hockey's Tier II team.

It's absurd to compare anyone to Buffalo Sabres star Jack Eichel, but there are similarities in his skill set to that of the former BU Terrier. Westlund is a very good skater. He has a long, smooth stride that appears effortless. He can really get going quickly and seems to have that extra gear.

Westlund is eligible for this year's NHL Draft.

Here is Michigan's updated incoming freshman class from what I've gathered.

Hayden Lavigne signed years ago but he's finally coming to Michigan after posting a .914 save percentage in the USHL.

Player Pos. Ht/Wt Previous Team
Jack LaFontaine G 6-3/214 Janesville Jets
Hayden Lavigne G 6-3/203 Bloomington Thunder
Will Lockwood F 5-10/172 US NTDP U-18
Griffin Luce D 6-3/214 US NTDP U-18
Luke Martin D 6-2/201 US NTDP U-18
Christian Meike D 6-0/165 Sioux City Musketeers
Steve Merl F 6-3/201 Bloomington Thunder
Nick Pastujov F 6-0/196 US NTDP U-18
James Sanchez F 6-2/190 US NTDP U-18
Gustaf Westlund F 6-0/170 Gunnery Prep

 

 

Comments

Alton

April 12th, 2016 at 11:58 PM ^

I wouldn't say it is "definitely" wrong, only possibly wrong.

Michigan has 2 goalies committed:  Lavigne and Lafontaine.  Significantly, though, neither has yet signed an LOI (or if they have, it hasn't been announced by Michigan).  Nagelvoort is returning, and I don't think that Michigan would have any real reason to carry 4 goalies on the roster.  That isn't something they are in the habit of doing, at least.

A pretty good educated guess would be that one of them is a 2016 freshman, and the other one stays in juniors until 2017 when they replace Nagelvoort on the roster...except Michigan has another commitment from a potential 2017 goalie, Dylan St. Cyr, who was on the USNTDP U-17 team this season.  To further confuse matters, though, some sources say St. Cyr is a 2018 freshman.

This is pure speculation, but I think the best guess is that the 2016/17 goalies are Nagelvoort & Lavigne, with Lafontaine showing up in 2017.  Since Lavigne just turned 20 years old last week, the clock starts ticking on him this season anyway.  Lafontaine is only 18, so he can spend another year in juniors without losing any eligibility.

On the other hand, if Berenson is nervous about only carrying 2 scholarship goalies, let's just say that some scholarship money has been freed up in the last couple of weeks and he can spend some of that bringing in both Lavigne and Lafontaine.  It just seems to me like a waste of the 18 scholarships to have more than 2 of them spent on goalies.