Flyers sign Swedish winger Oscar Eklind to entry-level deal

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Even with four games remaining in the 2023-24 season, the Flyers have gotten a head start on signing players for next season. Philadelphia has signed Swedish forward Oscar Eklind to a one-year, entry-level contract.

Eklind has spent his entire career thus far in Sweden. This was his third consecutive season playing exclusively in the SHL. He reached career highs in the league in 48 games with Luleå HF. Eklind posted 17 goals and 28 points. He led the team in goals and was fourth in points. However, he didn't register a point in seven playoff games as Luleå lost to the Växjö Lakers in the quarterfinals. It was the same team Eklind scored a hat trick against back in October. Växjö was the second-best team in the SHL.

Eklind first spent time in HockeyAllsvenskan, Sweden's second-tier professional league. His best season there came with Mora IK in 2020-21. He posted 16 goals and 30 points in 52 games. Before his professional days, he played for Malmö Redhawks teams during his earlier career in the various aged leagues. His debut in the SHL came in 2016-17, though he only played three games for Malmö. Eklind appeared in 12 SHL games the following season before transitioning to HockeyAllsvenskan.

Eklind had 31 goals and 66 points in 183 games over four seasons in the second-tier league. He didn't fair any better in the SHL, posting 30 goals and 58 points in 160 over five seasons. Eklind has a chance to play for Sweden's national team at the World Championships. Pre-tournament training begins next week.

With a one-year contract, Eklind will likely get a chance to make the NHL roster next season. It's a long shot that he will, however, and his ceiling is closer to that of a fourth-liner if he makes it. His likely destination is the Phantoms unless he surprises in camp. It's not much of a risk for the Flyers. If anything, it's someone they can call up to eat bottom-line minutes if need be. If it doesn't work out, they can let him go at the season's end. If they decide to give him a qualifying offer, they would keep his rights even if he goes back to Sweden.