2022-23 Team: Farjestad BK (J20 Nationell)
Date of Birth: September 8, 2005
Place of Birth: Karlstad, Sweden
Height: 6-foot-0, Weight: 179 pounds
NHL Draft Eligibility: First-year eligible
There is a bit more to Hugo Hell than his eye-catching name. The young Swede has already been identified as having pro-caliber skating skills. In addition to his smooth skating, Hell has good vision, with and without the puck, and has a lot of raw potential for a very young player whose 18th birthday isn’t until September.
Hell was a solid contributor as one of the youngest players on Färjestad’s J20 team last season, and he has no problem being aggressive in his own zone, using his stick effectively to poke the puck away from opponents. He is also smart, knowing when to hold onto the puck or when to pass. His stat line was decent last season, with three goals and 11 assists in 46 games.
Hell does have some things to work on to take his game to the next level. He sometimes makes poor reads in his own end, and his positioning is a bit inconsistent. He has also shown some inconsistencies in transitioning the puck out of the defensive zone.
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Hell has a decent shot when he decides to utilize it. He does a good job of squeezing the blue line and will step in and take the shot from the point with decent speed and accuracy. He should improve in this area once he becomes confident in his own game, as he is prone to making panic decisions when pressed. Trusting his offensive instincts should come with maturity.
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Hugo Hell – NHL Draft Projection
A very young player who already has good skating skills should be intriguing to some NHL teams. Hell could likely see his name called toward the end of the draft as a player who will be given time to develop before a team decides what the next move might be.
“Hell is a smooth and mobile defenseman that displays good vision both with and without the puck. Hell is dynamic and mobile when pivoting direction, and he continues to gain speed over distances. He is effective and aggressive in his own zone and likes to put pressure against the puck-carrier. His is good at getting his stick out to poke the puck loose from challenging opponents.” –Fredrik Haak, FC Hockey
“Some of the defensive reads remain problematic, but he should have most of the tools to become more effective in the future. The offensive skill only shows in flashes, but the flashes are pretty interesting. He’s got a better offensive sense than most of his peers ranked in the similar range, even if the execution errors keep him from truly being a strong producer at this age.” -NHL Prospect Report, Elite Hockey Draft Guide, June 2023
- Overall offensive game
- Sees the ice well
Under Construction – Improvements to Make
- Decision-making with the puck
- Defensive positioning
As one of the youngest prospects in the draft makes it difficult to project what the future holds for Hell. The fact that he has consistently played up the last few years shows that many feel that he could skate in the NHL, and the proper development could make him a player who logs good minutes and sees time on special teams.
Risk – 4/5, Reward 3/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offense – 5/10, Defense – 5/10