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Colorado Avalanche Top 25 Under 25: #8 Oskar Olausson

The Swedish forward looks for a rebound year ahead of him.

Vancouver Canucks v Colorado Avalanche Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images

The Top 25 Under 25 is a collaboration by members of the Mile High Hockey staff. Five writers have ranked players under the age of 25 in the Colorado Avalanche organization as of July 1, 2023. Now, we’ll count down each of the 25 players ranked.

Oskar Olausson comes in the eighth spot, falling two positions from his sixth-place ranking in last year’s edition of T25U25. Olausson’s first full year playing in the United States came with some challenges, perhaps leading to this lower ranking than some may have expected.

The 20-year-old forward out of Stockholm, Sweden, found plenty of playing time in the AHL and a surprise call-up to play for the Avalanche in one game last year due to the significant injury struggles the team faced. He made his NHL debut on November 23 against the Vancouver Canucks, without putting on much notice and being sent right back to Loveland.

The 2021 first-round pick in the NHL Draft’s playstyle still needs some adjusting to fit the AHL level. His slick skating and puck-handling skills are excellent for zone entries and finding teammates, but can be stopped simply by brute force. This transition to a tough and rigid AHL style of play only saw Olausson score 11 goals and provide nine assists in 63 games.

Year three in Loveland is a good time for him to step his game up and see if he can earn another call-up to the Avs squad. Likely due to his play style, he wouldn’t fit as well in a bottom-six checking role and would want to be scoring and providing in the top six. There are shades of Alex Newhook in him of wanting to score and be higher in the lineup, but can he prove he’s worthy of the role?

Luckily for Olausson, he has plenty of time to continue to develop at only 20 years old. He is signed through the 2025-26 season on his ELC and will have chances. Will he take advantage of them and get the support he needs to possibly become either a middle-six player or a top-six star down the line? Let us know in the comments below!

2023 Top 25 Under 25

#9 Justus Annunen

#10 Ben Meyers

#11 Sam Malinksi

#12 Jason Polin

#13 Ondrej Pavel

#14 Alex Beaucage

#15 Sampo Ranta

#16 Taylor Makar

#17 Jeremy Hanzel

#18 Trent Miner

#19 Colby Ambrosio

#20 Gianni Fairbrother

#21 Matt Stienburg

#22 Chris Romaine

#23 Maros Jedlicka

#24 Andrei Buyalsky

#25: Nikita Ishimnikov