Vegas Golden Knights Top 25 Under 25: Jonas Rondbjerg prepares to turn pro
Vegas is clearly intrigued by its Danish forward prospect.
Knights On Ice’s 2019-20 preseason Golden Knights Top 25 Under 25 series ranks the top 25 players under the age of 25 currently in Vegas’ system. Six Knights On Ice writers created their own Top 25 Under 25 ballots. Each individual writer’s ballot was then used to generate a composite score that forms the final ballot.
Few Golden Knights prospects impressed more than forward Jonas Rondbjerg during development camp. Not only does Rondbjerg have experience playing against grown adult men, but he also appears to fit the mold of what George McPhee, Kelly McCrimmon and head coach Gerard Gallant look for in their players — a 200-foot forward with the ability to succeed at both 5-on-5 and special teams.
No. 10: Jonas Rondbjerg
Age: 20 (March 31, 1999)
Size: 6-foot-2, 194 pounds
After a successful season in Sweden’s SuperElit league in 2016-17, including a brief stay with the SHL’s Växjö Lakers HC, Rondbjerg was selected in the third round (No. 65 overall) by the Golden Knights. Since then, Rondbjerg’s stock has risen (and even fallen) significantly.
As a teenager during the 2017-18 season, Rondbjerg earned an extended stay with Växjö in the SHL, and he made a respectable impact. In 35 games, he collected six goals and 11 points, which, for someone at that age, is very impressive.
Rondbjerg continued to raise eyebrows during the 2018 World Junior Championship tournament. Unsurprisingly, Denmark, a country not known for producing many quality hockey prospects, didn’t find much success in the tournament. Rondbjerg, however, was excellent for his Danish team as he finished the tournament with seven points in six games.
Joachim Blichfeld taps in a beautiful feed from Jonas Rondbjerg. 3-0 Denmark! @CanadianTire #BigPlay #WorldJuniors https://t.co/JLvAqi0ZFz pic.twitter.com/FVYJepqJOP— TSN (@TSN_Sports) December 27, 2016
Luca Hollenstein with a big save in the opening moment on Jonas Rondbjerg right off the bat. Danes playing aggressive early. #WJC2019 pic.twitter.com/Ff9eKV7SUk— Steven Ellis (@StevenEllisTHN) December 29, 2018
Strangely, Rondbjerg took a bit of a step back in his draft-plus-two season. Despite earning even more time in the SHL, the Rungsted native only posted six points (two goals, four assists) in 45 games with Växjö. And in the 2019 World Junior Championship, he only managed two points in six games.
While the statistical decline may rub some the wrong way, the Golden Knights clearly don’t seem to be alarmed. Vegas signed Rondbjerg to a three-year entry-level contract this summer, meaning he’ll have a chance to play in the AHL for the Chicago Wolves this coming season.
For those expecting Rondbjerg to immediately light it up in the AHL, you may be left disappointed. Rondbjerg does not play a flashy game, and it’s unlikely he’ll force his way onto an NHL lineup anytime soon. However, he does play a very good two-way game that the Golden Knights brass adore. He projects as a reliable bottom-sixer and penalty killer at the next level, though his ceiling could be a bit higher if his scoring really takes off in Chicago.
Previously in Vegas Golden Knights Preseason 2019 Top 25 Under 25:
- Introduction and honorable mentions
- No. 25, Peter Diliberatore
- No. 24, Xavier Bouchard
- No. 23, Brandon Kruse
- No. 22, Keegan Kolesar
- No. 21, Jack Dugan
- No. 20, Isaiah Saville
- No. 19, Layton Ahac
- No. 18, Jake Leschyshyn
- No. 17, Nicolas Roy
- No. 16, Valentin Zykov
- No. 15, Ivan Morozov
- No. 14, Kaedan Korczak
- No. 13, Pavel Dorofeyev
- No. 12, Dylan Coghlan
- No. 11, Ben Jones/