Växjö Lakers

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Växjö Lakers
2019–20 Växjö Lakers season
Växjö Lakers logo.svg
CityVäxjö, Sweden
LeagueSwedish Hockey League
Home arenaVida Arena
General managerHenrik Evertsson
Head coachSam Hallam
Le Mat Trophy2015, 2018, 2021

Växjö Lakers Hockey Club (often referred to as the Växjö Lakers or VLH) is an ice hockey club from Växjö in Sweden. The club plays in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL; formerly Elitserien), the top-level league of Swedish ice hockey, and made its debut there in 2011–12. They play their home games in the Vida Arena. The club has won the Swedish national championship three times, in 2015, 2018 and 2021.[1]


The club was founded in 1997, after Växjö HC went bankrupt that year. Växjö Lakers originally played in Växjö Ishall as their home arena, but prior to the 2011–12 season they moved to Vida Arena. The construction of the Vida Arena was finished in summer 2011.

The club began play in the 1997–98 season. Starting in Division 4, four divisions below the Elitserien/SHL, Växjö worked its way to HockeyAllsvenskan within 6 years, being promoted 3 times. With a perfect record in the 2003 HockeyAllsvenskan Kvalserien, the club qualified for HockeyAllsvenskan. Sensationally, during their debut season in HockeyAllsvenskan, the club acquired Shjon Podein, an NHL-merited North American player who played 699 NHL games and won the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche in 2001. The acquirement was described as "årets värvning" (acquirement of the year) by some people.[2] During Podein's years in Växjö he became a crowd favorite.[3] Prior to the following season, the 2004–05 season, the team also acquired Brad DeFauw, another NHL-merited North American player who played 9 NHL games and 154 AHL games. Both Shjon Podein and Brad DeFauw left the team after the 2004–05 season.

The club would spend 8 seasons in HockeyAllsvenskan and, during that time, reach the Kvalserien qualification for Elitserien three times. Växjö did not manage to promote to Elitserien in the 2009 and 2010 respective Kvalserien qualifications, but after winning the 2010–11 HockeyAllsvenskan season for the first time in club history and earning a third consecutive trip to Kvalserien, Växjö secured promotion to the top-tier league Elitserien in the eighth round (of ten) in the 2011 Kvalserien. The team finished the 2011 Kvalserien with 26 points, which is a record in the Kvalserien history.

The team formerly used red, yellow and blue as its colours, both in the team's logo and the team's jerseys. On 18 April 2011 it was announced that the club had changed the colours of their jerseys to blue and orange prior to the 2011–12 season.[4] At that time it was also announced that the club's logo had been changed to an orange shield containing the name of the club beneath a lion holding a crossbow – an image from the Småland coat of arms.

Elitserien/Swedish Hockey League[edit]

The club's first game in the Elitserien league was played on 13 September 2011, losing 0–2 to Frölunda HC in front of an outsold Scandinavium. Two days later, the club historically took their first points in Elitserien, beating Luleå HF on away ice 3–2 in a shootout, despite trailing by two goals in the third period.[5] Their first home game was played on September 17, against Linköpings HC, in front of an outsold Vida Arena. Linköping won the game 4–2. Former Växjö Lakers crowd favorite Shjon Podein watched the game in the arena.[6] Their first home points and regulation-time win came on September 27, when the Lakers won 4–1 against Modo Hockey.[7] The Lakers' first shutout came on away ice when Modo were beaten 2–0 on 25 October 2011.[8]

Växjö Lakers played the first Småland derby game in Elitserien history, which was on away ice against reigning regular-season champions HV71, on 8 October 2011 in front of an outsold Kinnarps Arena—exactly 7,000 spectators—in Jönköping.[9] Växjö Lakers came out on top with a 3–2 victory in a shootout. Växjö Lakers forward Mike Iggulden scored three penalty shot goals in the game, two of them counted in the statistics.[10]

Season-by-season record[edit]

Season Level Division Record Avg.
Position W-T-L
This list features the five most recent completed seasons. For prior seasons, see List of Växjö Lakers seasons.
2014–15 Tier 1 SHL 3rd 24–9–6–16 4,980
Swedish Championship playoffs 12–6 5,629 Won finals, 4–2 vs Skellefteå AIK
2015–16 Tier 1 SHL 6th 25–4–4–19 4,947
Swedish Championship playoffs 7–6 5,629 Lost in semifinals, 3–4 vs Skellefteå AIK
2016–17 Tier 1 SHL 1st 26–7–7–12 4,757
Swedish Championship playoffs 2–4 5,629 Lost in quarterfinals, 2–4 vs Malmö Redhawks
2017–18 Tier 1 SHL 1st 34–6–2–10 4,658
Swedish Championship playoffs 12–1 5,629 Won finals, 4–0 vs Skellefteå AIK
2018–19 Tier 1 SHL 7th 22–3–10–17 4,691
Eighth-finals 2–0 4,579 Won 2–0 vs Örebro HK
Swedish Championship playoffs 1–4 5,223 Lost in quarterfinals, 1–4 vs Luleå HF

Players and personnel[edit]

Current roster[edit]

Updated 26 July, 2019.[11][12]

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
44 Sweden Peter Andersson D L 30 2017 Kvidinge, Sweden
15 United States Casey Bailey C/RW R 29 2019 Anchorage, Alaska
49 Sweden David Bernhardt D L 23 2019 Huddinge, Sweden
3 Sweden Oliver Bohm D L 29 2016 Karlstad, Sweden
9 Sweden Marcus Davidsson C L 22 2019 Tyresö, Sweden
17 Sweden Jonas Engström LW L 30 2019 Södertälje, Sweden
4 Sweden Tim Erixon D L 30 2019 Port Chester, New York, United States
30 Sweden Viktor Fasth G L 39 2017 Kalix, Sweden
22 Sweden Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson C R 24 2019 Stockholm, Sweden
Sweden Emil Forslund RW R 27 2020 Tidaholm, Sweden
10 Sweden Richard Gynge RW R 34 2019 Tyresö, Sweden
29 Sweden Pontus Holmberg C L 22 2018 Västerås, Sweden
23 Czech Republic Roman Horák C L 30 2018 České Budějovice, Czechoslovakia
60 Sweden Erik Josefsson (A) C L 34 2008 Gislaved, Sweden
Sweden Fredrik Karlström C L 23 2019 Stockholm, Sweden
55 Finland Miika Koivisto D L 31 2019 Vaasa, Finland
5 Finland Juuso Vainio D R 27 2020 Hämeenlinna, Finland
27 Sweden Martin Lundberg LW L 31 2017 Skellefteå, Sweden
25 Sweden Linus Nässén D L 23 2019 Norrtälje, Sweden
77 Sweden Pontus Netterberg RW R 29 2016 Varberg, Sweden
41 Sweden Ludvig Nilsson C L 27 2019 Stockholm, Sweden
48 Sweden Daniel Rahimi (A) D L 34 2017 Umeå, Sweden
Sweden Robert Rosén C R 34 2020 Alvesta, Sweden
18 Sweden Marcus Sylvegård RW R 22 2019 Gessie, Sweden

Team captains[edit]

Honored members[edit]

Växjö Lakers retired numbers
No. Player Position Career No. retirement
14 Stefan Nilsson F 1990–1991, 1997–2003
38 Johan Markusson RW 2005–2014

Franchise records and leaders[edit]

Scoring leaders[edit]

These are the top-ten point-scorers of the Växjö Lakers since their promotion to the SHL in the 2011–12 season. Figures are updated after each completed season.[13]

Note: Pos = Position; GP = Games Played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; P/G = Points per game;   = current Växjö Lakers player

Player Pos GP G A Pts P/G
Robert Rosén C 296 88 113 201 .68
Liam Reddox LW 386 72 78 150 .39
Tuomas Kiiskinen LW 206 58 72 130 .63
Cory Murphy D 208 28 89 117 .56
Tomi Kallio RW 204 43 73 116 .57
Erik Josefsson C 405 50 43 93 .23
Dennis Rasmussen C 156 41 46 87 .56
Linus Fröberg C 208 28 55 83 .40
Noah Welch D 164 19 54 73 .44
Brendan Shinnimin C 92 31 36 67 .73

Trophies and awards[edit]


Le Mat Trophy

  • 2014-15, 2017-18, 2020-21


Coach of the Year

  • Sam Hallam: 2017–18

Honken Trophy

Rookie of the Year


  1. ^ Anders Feltenmark (24 April 2015). "Växjö Lakers HC svenska mästare" (in Swedish). Swedish Ice Hockey Association. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  2. ^ "Änderson om avund" (in Swedish). LakersLakejer.net. 2003-11-04. Retrieved 2011-06-25.[permanent dead link]
  3. ^ "Shjon Podein har landat i Växjö" (in Swedish). Sveriges Radio'. 2004-10-19. Retrieved 2011-06-25.
  4. ^ "Orange revolution i Växjö Lakers" (in Swedish). Smålandsposten. 2011-04-18. Archived from the original on 2012-07-22. Retrieved 2011-04-21.
  5. ^ Jonas Gustavsson (2011-09-15). "Kallio fixade historisk vinst" (in Swedish). Växjö Lakers Hockey. Retrieved 2011-09-15.
  6. ^ Jonas Gustavsson (2011-09-16). "Invigningsöverraskningen: Podein på plats i VIDA Arena" (in Swedish). Växjö Lakers Hockey. Retrieved 2011-09-16.
  7. ^ Jonas Gustavsson (2011-09-27). "Första segern i VIDA Arena". Växjö Lakers Hockey. Retrieved 2011-10-02.
  8. ^ Jonas Gustavsson (2011-10-25). "Seger – och första nollan" (in Swedish). Växjö Lakers Hockey. Retrieved 2011-10-25.
  9. ^ Bosse Johander (2011-10-08). "Historiskt derby i Småland" (in Swedish). Sveriges Radio. Retrieved 2011-10-08.
  10. ^ Per Johansson (2011-10-08). "Iggulden straffade HV71 i smålandsderbyt" (in Swedish). Växjö Lakers Hockey. Retrieved 2011-10-08.
  11. ^ "Växjö Lakers roster" (in Swedish). Växjö Lakers. 2019-06-05. Retrieved 2019-06-05.
  12. ^ "Eliteprospects.com - Växjö Lakers". Eliteprospects.com. Retrieved 2019-06-05.
  13. ^ "Växjö Lakers - All Time SHL leaders". quanthockey.com. 2019-05-31. Retrieved 2019-05-31.

External links[edit]