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Vaxjo Lakers Dethrone Two Time Champion Skelleftea AIK

Posted By Chris Ransom on 4/25/2015

In 2011-2012, the Vaxjo Lakers join the Elitserien League also known as the SHL Swedish Hockey League. Around the same time many were concerned that Skelleftea AIK would regress without Adam Larsson. Turns out the opposite was true.

Skelleftea lost the 2011-2012 to Brynas IF Championship Game following Larsson's departure after losing the 2010-2011 Championship to Brynas IF. The next two years following a loss in the Elitserien finals, Skelleftea won two consecutive championships against Lulea HF in 2012-2013 before getting revenge on Skelleftea AIK. This squad had a chance a three peat.

That three peat on a roster that always seems to develop NHL talent got spoiled by a group of underdogs known as the Vaxjo Lakers who have no NHL Draft prospects, but 18 guys over the age of 22 with a purpose and passion for the game.

There are 3 different captains from 3 different countries on the Lakers. The diversity of this squad is incredible.

Finland native Tom Kallio finally won the LeMat Trophy which is the Swedish version of the Stanley Cup at the age of 38. Kale was the first to hoist the LeMat trophy after the Vaxjo Lakers dethroned Skelleftea A.I.K.

Alternate captain Noah Welch was born in the United States and would love to return to America after winning the Stefan Liv trophy as the Tournaments MVP for the 2015 SM Liiga Playoffs. Unlike the Lakers captain Kallio, Welch is only 32-years-old. The biggest concern with him is the fact that he turns 33 in August and would have to be put on a 1-year 2 way contract prove it deal if an NHL team decided to take a chance on Welch.

Finally there is Alexandre Johansson who was born in Sweden. Johansson is only 26-years-old and is the youngest alternate captain on the team. He led the Lakers with points during the regular season. Johansson doesn't turn 27 until November 30th, so there is a lot of upside with bringing Johansson to the NHL for a 2 or 3 year deal that would be treated as a two-way contract where you could send him to the NHL or the AHL.

Which Laker do you want your favorite team to sign. Go ahead and comment below and make sure to check out the links to our other Elitserien webpages that we will be updating in the upcoming days.

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