This is a good question.
The newest Av is an unlikely one, and the signing came out of nowhere (like usual). When the acquisition was announced, my first reaction was, "Who the hell is that?" So, as usual, I decided to do some research to possibly answer that question. Here's what I found.
Name: Joakim Lindstrom
Position: Listed as Center, but will play LW
Vitals: 27 years old, 6'-0, 187 lbs
Birth Info: December 5, 1983 in Skelleftea, Sweden
Internationally competes for: Sweden
Drafted: 2002 #41 CBJ
Contract Info: 1 year, 1-way, $600,000
***(Bold = Professional League; Bold Italic = NHL, BOLD ITALIC CAPS = Movement)****
BORN AND RAISED IN SWEDEN
'99-'00: MODO J18 (17GP), MODO J20 (10GP), Sweden U17 (4GP)
'00-'01: MODO (SEL 17GP), MODO J20 (10GP), MODO J18 (6GP), Sweden U18 (6GP)
'01-02: MODO (SEL 56GP), MODO J20 (10GP), Troja-Ljungby (Allsvenskan (the 2nd highest league in Sweden) 3GP), Sweden U19 (7GP), Sweden U20 (9GP)
DRAFTED BY COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS, but stayed in Sweden
'02-'03: MODO (SEL 35GP, 3rd line, was injured), MODO J20 (2GP), Ornskoldsviks SK (Allsvenskan 2GP), Sweden U20 (6GP)
'03-'04: MODO (SEL 15GP), Sundsvall (Allsvenskan 2GP)
'04-'05: MODO (SEL 37GP *****TEAMMATE OF PETER FORSBERG*******), MODO J20 (2GP)
CAME TO NORTH AMERICA FULL-TIME
'04-'05: Syracuse Crush (AHL 13GP - this move was not approved by SEL, caused 26 game suspension)
'05-'06: Syracuse Crush (AHL 70GP), Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL 3GP)
'06-'07: Syracuse Crush (AHL 50GP), Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL 9GP)
'07-'08: Syracuse Crush (AHL 62GP), Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL 25GP)
TRADED TO ANAHEIM DUCKS (for a conditional pick), PUT ON WAIVERS, CLAIMED BY CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS, RECLAIMED BY DUCKS, PUT BACK ON WAIVERS
'08-'09: Iowa Chops (AHL 21GP)
TRADED TO PHOENIX COYOTES (For Logan Stephenson)
'08-'09: San Antonio Rampage (AHL 3GP), Phoenix Coyotes (NHL 44 GP)
WENT TO RUSSIA
'09-'10: Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod (KHL 55GP), Sweden (5GP)
WENT BACK TO SWEDEN
'10-'11: Skelleftea (SEL 72GP *****TEAMMATE OF ADAM LARSSON******), Sweden (9GP)
SIGNED BY AVALANCHE
NHL Experience: 4 Seasons, 81 games
Career NHL Stats: 81GP, 13G, 15A, 28P, .35PPG, -9, 46PIM, 114SOG, 1.43SOG/G, 1374 Shifts, 969:51 TTOI
'05-'06 CBJ: 3GP, 0G, 0A, 0P, 0, 0PIM, 4SOG, 25 Shifts, 8:25 ATOI
'06-'07 CBJ: 9GP, 1G, 0A, 1P, -3, 4PIM, 9SOG, 110 Shifts, 12:21 ATOI
'07-'08 CBJ: 25GP, 3G, 4A, 7P, 0, 14PIM, 25SOG, 325 Shifts, 13:41 ATOI
'08-'09 PHX: 44GP, 9G, 11A, 20P, -6, 28PIM, 77SOG, 897 Shifts, 20:38 ATOI
Career Pro Stats (non-junior leagues: NHL, AHL, KHL, SEL, International, Allsvenskan): 608GP, 152G, 215A, 367P, 555PIM, .60PPG, .25GPG, .35APG
Last Year's stats (Skelleftea, SEL): 72GP, 32G, 39A, 71P, 150PIM, .44GPG, .54APG, .99PPG ******LEAD THE LEAGUE IN SCORING*******
Last year's highlights - Joakim is #10.
Yes, this interview is old (4/12/08), but it give you a sense of how good his English is. For some reason, he seems to avoid looking at the camera. He's like this in all the interviews I've watched.
Lindström has great offensive skills. He doesn’t mind playing physical, he has a nose of the net and can deliver fine passes as well. Lindström has also good on-ice vision and hockey sense.
But like all young players he can and should improve everything. He is a pretty strong player and should use his body to a greater extent. Lindström must also play more determined. He seems a bit stressed at times and should choose the easiest way to deliver the puck.
With good vision, offensive instincts and superb passing ability, Lindstrom is ready to step into a scoring role in Syracuse. While he plays somewhat of a physical brand of hockey, Lindstrom has been tentative at times, somewhat unsurprising due to the fact that he’s had shoulder problems.
Twitter! And at least some of it is in English!
For whatever reason, he plays VERY well against the Adjectives. In 4 games, he has 3 goals and 2 assists. He also has scored 2 goals (his next highest total) against Vancouver (he got them both in a single game), Detroit, and, of course, Colorado.
Wait and See.
That's about the best we can do right now. There isn't a lot of information that I could find on Lindstrom's style of play. You would think that after playing in 5 different pro leagues and various international competition that there would be more info available, but alas, such is not the case.
However, we do know some things. He's a left wing. He's Swedish. His only time in the NHL was as a call-up. He weighs well under 200lbs. He doesn't like to look at the camera. He speaks English well. He has twitter. He's injury prone. And he's played pretty much everywhere there is to play.
But there is plenty we DON'T know. Yes, he led the SEL in scoring last year, but will that scoring translate to the NHL? He only scored .35PPG in his previous NHL call-ups, which is what O'Reilly scored last year. He reportedly has good on-ice vision, but again, how good will it be? And he supposedly plays a fairly physical game, but he's only 185 lbs, ten pounds lighter than Tomas Fleischmann.
That's another question - why is he here? Yes, we need left wings and I'm NOT complaining in the least, but it makes you wonder why we chose him. Here are the theories:
A) When our European Scouts were looking at Larsson, they saw this guy, said "Hm......", and snagged him.
B) He's Larsson bait. He shows that the Avs want to draft Larsson, but wanted to bring over one of his teammates to try to make him more comfortable in the NHL to make sure he decides to play in NA.
C) He's MorF's (but mostly Flash's) replacement on Duchene's wing. Maybe on Stastny's. And that's assuming he's a Top 6 guy. Which he might not be. And that's if he makes the NHL at all.
I'm not a huge conspiracy nut, so I'm leaning towards A, but the others have crossed my mind. Either way, I'm excited to see him play and figure out where he fits on this team.