Around this time last year, there were more than just whispers that Swedish standout Mathias Brome would be making the leap to the NHL. He had just finished up a strong season in the SHL, despite playing for a poor team that ended up relegated, and was a free agent with his sights set on new surroundings. A number of NHL teams were involved, including the Vegas Golden Knights, but there was also an incredibly strong market in Europe. Brome eventually re-signed in the SHL, joining Orebro HK on a one-year deal.
Fast-forward one year and the move looks like the right one for Brome. The 25-year-old winger has had a career year in the SHL, recording 17 goals and 43 points in 52 games to finish among the top ten in the league in both categories. A speedy and skilled forward who is also known for his strong work ethic, Brome again impressed the onlookers and now he has solidified his status as a top free agent option. In fact, the Swedish Hockey News reports that he has already turned down “millions” from offers in the SHL and KHL to pursue a deal in the NHL.
Leading the charge for Brome appear to be the Vancouver Canucks and Detroit Red Wings, two teams familiar with importing Swedish talent. However, the pair are in very different situations when it comes to recruitment this off-season. Vancouver is contending for a playoff spot this year and look to have a bright future behind a young core. However, the team is strapped for cap space and would target Brome as an affordable depth addition. Detroit is the NHL’s worst team this season (and one of the worst all-time) and needs to make impact addition this summer to turn things around. Last year, Brome would have been limited to a one-year entry-level contract to begin his NHL career but now Brome will be able to negotiate his first deal. He could opt for less money but perhaps a better opportunity to win and gain even more attention with the Canucks or he could try to both make more money and land a greater role by joining the Red Wings. Brome reportedly will not make his decision until after the SHL postseason is completed, by which time other NHL teams may have also entered the chase. However, one way or another, it seems Brome is finally set to make the leap this off-season.
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