Donovan: Dahlin is 'on that same level with McDavid'

The former Rochester American and teammate of Dahlin's on Frölunda joined Sal and the Bulldog on Wednesday

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June 20, 2018 - 4:48 pm

Photo: Kevin Hoffman - USA TODAY Sports


In the two years he has played in the Swedish Hockey League, Rasmus Dahlin has made a lasting impression on his peers around the league and his teammates witht he Frölunda Indians.

Matt Donovan had spent the last two seasons playing with Dahlin in Gothenburg, Sweden, getting the first chance to play with him when he was just 16-years-old.

The 28-year-old defenseman was a fourth-round draft choice of the New York Islanders back in 2008. Three years after making his NHL debut in 2012, Donovan was signed by the Buffalo Sabres as a free agent in the summer of 2015. He spent 2015-16 with the Rochester Americans before leaving the NHL to sign in Sweden.

Donovan joined the Bulldog and Sal Capaccio on Wednesday to discuss the Sabres' expected first overall pick. Here's some of what he had to say:

On Dahlin's early potential:

"He is kind of that same level with [Connor] McDavid."

Donovan on Dahlin's poise:

"He is very mature for his age. Very humble. He's going to work hard no matter how good people tell him he is."

Donovan recalling Dahlin's call-up:

"Two years ago when he first got called up, I don't think I heard him say one word. Once you get him to open up, he's a good kid. I think he will do well in an NHL locker room."

Donovan on Dahlin's skillset:

"The one thing that sticks out for me is his puck handling and how he sees the ice. Some people say McDavid; he moves like that, but differently. In practice it was nothing like I've ever seen before."

Donovan on how Dahlin will take to the NHL:

"Well, McDavid did it. He's a really good player. My belief is that [Dahlin] can step right in and be a great player. I don't think it will take too long."

You can hear Donovan's entire interview below:

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