Swedish center Mika Zibanejad is just about ready to take center stage in the world of hockey. The eighteen-year-old is a Swedish professional ice hockey player currently playing for DjurgÃ¥rdens IF in the Swedish Elite League. He began playing hockey at the young age of six, and eventually made his Elitserien debut in December 2010, and scored his first Elitserien goal in January of 2011. Zibanejadâ€™s is the product of an Iranian father and a Finnish mother. Mikaâ€™s half-brother, Monir Kalgoum, is also an ice hockey player, and he currently plays for Milton Keynes Lightning.
The six foot one, 195 pound Zibanejad is currently the sixth rated prospect for the NHL Draft by the International Scouting Service. The noted hockey website HockeysFuture.com states, â€œZibanejad is physically ready for the NHL and has the skills and work ethic to allow him to control play at both ends of the rink. And they projected the Ottawa Senators as selecting him with the sixth selection in their mock draft.
The Hockey News has Zibanejad listed as the ninth best prospect for the NHL Draft later this month. They describe him as the following, â€œHas the makings of a complete center, with outstanding hockey sense, two-way acumen and a very projectable frame (6-2)… split his 2010-11 campaign between Djurgardenâ€™s top club and the junior ranks, producing five goals and nine points in 26 games in the Elitserien… was rated second among International skaters in Central Scoutingâ€™s final rankings… is good on face-offs and can play a physical game… will need to become stronger to better compete against NHL defenders…â€ The 2011 NHL Draft will take place on June 24th and 25th in St. Paul, Minnesota.