The EP Rinkside 2023 European Free Agency Guide
There are close to 30 skaters who have played at least one game in the NHL season and came to the league as an undrafted free agent out of Europe. Between Artemi Panarin and Andrey Kuzmenko, there are some pretty high-profile names in that group, too.
Most of the time, you're getting depth contributors, if that, but this is the one form of undrafted free agency that still has the potential to produce home run hits. It's easy enough to understand why, too. A lot of these players have professional experience, some of them in top leagues like the KHL where the competition is arguably more fierce than what the AHL offers.
These players are uniquely well-equipped to not only make the jump to the NHL but to hit the ground running. It's why sometimes two-thirds of the league will be actively trying to recruit these players to their ranks.
This year's cycle may not have a Kuzmenko-type player in their ranks, but you may well find a handful of depth contributors outlined in this European free agency guide.
We've written a scouting report on all of the top players, enlisted the help of Greg Balloch with scouting the goalies, included notes from our resident Swedish hockey expert Uffe Bodin, and graded their physical tools on the same 1-to-9 linear scale that we use in our draft guide and affiliated prospects work.
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