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From The Ice

Lars Johansson joins Blackhawks on one year deal


The Chicago Blackhawks have been trying to shore up their depth for next season on a pretty strict budget – so they’ve brought on two free agents from overseas on short-term deals, including goaltender Lars Johansson.

Johansson will come to Chicago on a one year deal worth $575,000 at both the AHL and NHL levels from Frolunda HC of the SHL. The 28-year-old goaltender played 37 games for the Swedish hockey club last year during the regular season, putting up a whopping seven shutouts and a .927 save percentage in all situations en route to helping the club win their fourth national championship.

The club also brought another Swedish skater over, though, bringing 25-year-old forward Martin Lundberg on board on an entry-level deal of his own.

Set to make an estimated $600,000 at the NHL level next season, Lundberg – a native of Skelleftea, Sweden – will come into Chicago’s system out of Swedish club Skelleftea AIK, where he’s played since his junior career. This past year, he put up 13 goals and 21 points through 44 games for the club during the regular season, and he boasts six points in 16 post-season games, as well.

Not expected to be a top point producer in the NHL, Lundberg could easily be a depth add for the Blackhawks in their minor league system – like Johansson, he’s coming in without eye-catching numbers at a young developmental age in Europe. For a team without much money to spare, though, both players are likely smart depth pickups.

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