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Gophers Hockey: Leon Bristedt commits to Minnesota

Bristedt, who scored 4 points (3 G -1 A) in 5 games in the 2013 World U-18 Championships, is the first Swedish player to commit to the Gophers.

Gopher head coach Don Lucia picked up the first Swedish commit in team history
Gopher head coach Don Lucia picked up the first Swedish commit in team history
Minnesota Athletics

It appears that Minnesota's Pride on Ice has picked up a commitment from across the world.

Swedish forward Leon Bristedt committed to the University of Minnesota for 2014-15. Bristedt posted the news on Twitter.

He also tweeted the same thing in Swedish.

Bristedt, a native of Waxholm, Sweden (20 miles outside Stockholm), has been playing for Swedish team Linkoping  the past two seasons. The 18 year-old has been splitting time between the J-18 and J-20 teams. He currently leads the Swedish J-20 league with 32 points (17 G -15 A) in 22 games.

This year Bristedt, listed at 5'8", 183 lbs, also was a member of Sweden's World U-18 team, where he finished second on the team with 3 goals in 5 games. The Swedes were knocked out in the quarterfinals by the eventual silver medalists, United States.

Bristedt will be the first Swede to ever play for the Gophers in the team's long history. Minnesota normally recruits in state although that hasn't meant there are exceptions.  Two European players to wear Maroon and Gold in the last decade have been Thomas Vanek (Austria) and Erik Haula (Finland).

Still, both Vanek and Haula played in North America prior to heading to Minnesota. It is rare for Europeans to have played internationally and head to college in the United States.

Bristedt went undrafted in 2013 during his first year of eligibility.


Nathan Wells is a college hockey columnist for SB Nation and College Hockey News. You can also follow him on Twitter --