The Aberdeen Wings 2023-24 roster will include some names that are familiar to hockey fans.
During the offseason, Aberdeen tendered Lucas Lidström and Isak Holmström. They are the sons of former NHL greats Nicklas Lidström and Tomas Holmström, both from Sweden.
Lucas Lidstrom is a 6-foot-1, 185-pound defenseman from Detroit. He scored two goals and had seven assists in 55 games played for Vasteras IK J20 in Sweden last season.
“He is a big, 200-foot defenseman that does not have many flaws in his game. He will be a stabilizer for us on the back end with his style of play and his junior hockey experience. He brings many intangible qualities to our team that makes him a coach’s dream,” Wings Assistant Coach Zach Stepan said in a news release.
Isak Holmström is a 6-foot-3, 192-pound forward who played with Lulea HF J20 in Sweden last season. He had 13 goals and 11 assists in 49 games played.
“Isak is a big-sized kid who plays with tons of tenacity and has a knack for scoring goals around the net front. He will also bring a ton of power play experience to our young group and show the locker room what it means to be an excellent worker,” Stepan said in a release.
Fathers won four Stanley Cups with Red Wings
Nicklas Lidström and Tomas Holmström were teammates with the Detroit Red Wings, winning Stanley Cups in 2008, 2002, 1998 and 1997. Lidström is a hall-of-famer and generally considered one of the best hockey players in history.
The Wings also added to their roster during the NAHL Draft last month, selecting three players.
With the 19th overall pick, Aberdeen drafted Forward Riley Sharun. He’s a 6-foot-2, 179-pound forward from West Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. He played last season with the West Kelowna Warriors of the British Columbia Hockey league, scoring 10 goals and eight assists in 47 games.
“Riley Sharun is a player we expect to lean (on) heavily as a leader and as a producer. He is a kid who brings a ton of tenacity and excels at the finer details of the game, which we will look for our young guys to learn from,” Wings Head Coach and General Manager Scott Langer said in a release.
In the second round, the Wings drafted Simon Pollock 51st overall. He is a 6-foot-2, 185-pound left-handed forward from Santa Rosa, Calif. He played last season with the Weyburn Red Wings of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League, finishing with 10 goals and 10 assists in 45 games.
“Simon Pollock is a player that will be a big piece for us this year as he can be a Swiss Army knife. He is good at a lot of different things and will be able to add so many different aspects to our team. He plays hard and heavy and isn’t afraid of anything,” Langer said in a release.
JP Johnson of St. Thomas, Minn., was selected 83rd overall in the third round. The 5-foot-11, 165-pound forward played last season with the Gillette Wild of the NA3L. In 44 games, he had 34 goals and 36 assists and was named to the all-rookie first team.
“JP Johnson is a player who plays hard and with good pace. He has a knack for scoring goals and finds open ice to make plays. Johnson can play a very solid 200-foot game and will be someone who will play along the wall and in the tough areas,” Aberdeen Director of Personnel Craig Larson said in a news release.
Wings first home game is Sept. 22 vs. Bismarck
The Wings had their main camp last weekend in Fargo, N.D., as they prepare for the 2023-24 season. They’ll hit the ice for practices in Aberdeen after the Brown County Fair.
Their first home game is Sept. 22 against Bismarck at 7:15 p.m. at the Odde Ice Center. The same teams play again the following night in Aberdeen. Games for the North American Hockey League Showcase will be Sept. 13-16 in Blaine, Minn. All teams will play four non-division games, but pairings have yet to be released.