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Canucks’ Top 25 Under 25 (2022 Edition): #25 Viktor Persson

The 20-year-old dips a bit in our rankings, shedding his “sexy late flier” label.

Vancouver Canucks Headshots
Viktor Persson #59 of the Vancouver Canucks poses for his official headshot for the 2021-2022 season on September 22, 2021 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images

Welcome to the 2022 Edition of the Vancouver Canucks Top 25 Under 25 Rankings. The list includes all players in the Canucks system who were born after April 15th, 1998.

After entering the Canucks organization with some sexy late-round flier hype, some of the shine has worn off for Viktor Persson.

But, as a relatively young prospect who plays at a premium position, he’s still a player worth tracking in the years ahead.

Like many COVID-era prospects, Persson’s development has been uneven. He suffered a slew of injuries in his draft year, which caused him to fall to the seventh round.

Then, the pandemic forced him to play only 31 games across three different leagues in his draft plus one season.

During his draft plus-two season in 2021-22, Persson came over to North America, suiting up for the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL.

Despite being a WHL rookie, Persson was among one of the older players in the league at 20 years old.

He started off hot at the beginning of the season, flashing his transitional brilliance and innate ability to thread breakout passes.

However as the season went on, Persson’s effectiveness with the Blazers dwindled.

Including the playoffs, Persson registered just one goal and six assists over the final 32 games of the season.

His stagnating development and lack of production meant that the Canucks weren’t willing to offer him a contract with the Abbotsford Canucks for this upcoming season. That’s probably for the best considering that a more established prospect in Jett Woo had enough trouble himself in making the baby Canucks’ defence on the right side.

Although Persson wasn’t overly impressive during the second half of the season, that sort of fits his M.O., according to The Athletic’s Scott Wheeler.

“It’s hard to describe Viktor because he doesn’t play a flashy game, but I actually think he could if were playing a little more aggressively,” Wheeler said on the Western Centric Podcast.

He’s a kid who moves very well, he understands spacing…when to attack and when to make the safe play. He’s excellent on outlets, I’ve seen him stretch the ice this year with [some] leading three-zone passes.”

What’s Next for Persson?

Since Persson aged out of the WHL and didn’t receive an AHL contract, he was caught in no-mans land for a good chunk of this offseason.

That changed in August when it was reported that Persson will join the Lahti Pelicans of SM-Liiga in Finland.

Persson will play alongside two former Canucks prospects, who recently exited our Top 25 Under 25 rankings, in Lukas Jasek and Toni Utunen.

This is a good move for Persson, who will have a clearer path to playing more than he would have had in Abbotsford.

Now, it’s up to Persson to continue developing after flatlining in Kamloops.