2022 Buffalo Sabres Top 25 Under 25, T-#20: Noah Ostlund
Swedish center finds himself ranked evenly with familiar face.
The Top 25 Under 25 is a collaboration by members of the Die By The Blade community. It was a combination of staff writers and over 600 readers that ranked Buffalo Sabres players under the age of 25 as of August 1, 2022. Each participant used their own metric of current ability and production to rank each player.
Coming in at #20 for Die by the Blade’s T25U25 and tied with defenseman Jacob Bryson is forward Noah Ostlund. The Swedish-born center caught the attention of Kevyn Adams and many others when he was drafted in the first round this summer as the Sabres look to keep improving their offense over the next few seasons.
Though we will not see him in a Rochester or Buffalo sweater for at least a few more years, the good news is that Ostlund has the right attitude and competitive nature for a promising career. He is passionate about putting the time in now to make that dream happen. As the current Sabres team made a substantial improvement in their effort last season, Ostlund’s smooth skating, speed, and work ethic will surely be a great fit when his time comes.
During the last few off-seasons, the lefthanded center has been found either on the ice five days a week or practicing shooting drills with family friend and former NHL player Mikael Samuelsson and his son William.
However, there is one thing all too familiar with Sabres fans: his size (or, lack thereof). For well over a decade, Buffalo has arguably been a small, soft team - even during their better days - and this is a bit of an annoyance, but nothing to be overly concerned about. What will make him stand out is his ability to play both on the penalty kill and power play as well as the space he creates with his teammates to help that puck find the back of the net. He is a selfless player and an excellent passer which is evident any time he is on the ice. He tallied an impressive 56 points in 55 games last season with a majority of those points coming in as assists.
Will Ostlund be one of the key pieces at the tail-end of yet another rebuild? Only time will tell. He will continue to play under a Swedish Hockey League contract through 2024 with Djurgardens, but after that, fans should be excited about his potential.