Elias Pettersson, the fifth-overall pick in the 2017 NHL Draft, has been chasing history all season.
On Thursday, he finally set a new record.
Last week, Pettersson surpassed Peter Forsberg for the second-most points ever in Sweden’s top league by a player under the age of 20. Forsberg had his big season in 1992-93, two years after the Philadelphia Flyers chose him sixth overall.
Pettersson had a four-point game Thursday, which lifted him past Kent Nilsson for the most points ever by a junior-aged player in the SHL. Pettersson now has 55 points in 43 games, which not only sets an historical record for his age group, but also makes him the highest scoring player in the entire league this season despite missing games to play at the world juniors.
The record breaking goal!
Elias Pettersson scores on the breakaway to record his 55th point of the season – the most by any U20 player in SHL history#Canucks pic.twitter.com/u9kwuZblRr
— Ryan Biech (@ryanbiech) March 8, 2018
Nilsson, who set his record as a 19-year-old in 1975-76, still holds the U20 record for points per game (1.47) as he recorded 53 points in just 38 games.
There is no indication yet whether or not Pettersson will come to North America next season. Canucks president Trevor Linden wouldn’t commit to a direction when he was asked about Pettersson in January on Hockey Central Saturday.
“We’re going to have to sit down and see where he’s at but what he’s done in the Swedish Elite League is pretty impressive,” Linden said.