2024 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: Simon Zether

Photo by Pär Olert

The Scouting Report:

Simon Zether is an eighteen-year-old Swedish prospect at the forward position. With a height of 6’3, a right-handed shot, and experience playing internationally, in the SHL, and in the Rögle BK J20 lineup, Zether is a prospect that has been one to keep an eye out for. He’s gained some SHL traction for strategic usage of his height, Matt Rempe-style. Despite this past season being his first in the SHL’s Rögle BK team, he’s earned a full-time lineup spot. Internationally, Zether maintained eleven points in twenty-nine games.

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Draft Projections

Ranked #44 by Inside The Rink
Ranked #58 by The Athletic/Pronman
Ranked #76 by TSN/McKenzie
Ranked #58 by The Athletic/Wheeler and Pronman
Ranked #60 by TSN/Button

Conrad Jack of Inside The Rink has Simon Zether at forty-fourth overall in the 2024 NHL Draft.

I’ve highlighted some of Zether’s attributes, let’s take a deeper dive into his attributes and areas for improvement.

Diving Deeper:

Offensive Strength

A common theme in Zether’s prior scouting reports is his variety of offensive strengths. While he isn’t an elite goal scorer, he has been described as a player who is “calm and mature” under offensive pressure. Multiple reports noted Zether’s ability to utilize his height to his advantage, with one report referring to him as a “physical pest strong enough to win battles over older competition”. Other reports noted Zether’s willingness to play towards the middle of the net, “creating chances for both himself and space for his wingers… strong on pucks.” His offensive strengths are what have led him to the SHL, despite not having much playing time.

“It’s hard not to like a 6-foot-3 center with some two-way value and notable offensive tools.” – Chris Peters

Hockey IQ

Another commonality in the variety of Zether’s scouting reports is high hockey intelligence and creativity when it comes to playmaking. Zether has been described as being a “highly intelligent” player with “good vision and a creative pass-first, set-up guy giving opportunities to his linemates.” The Hockey Writers’ Logan Horn called Zether’s hockey intelligence his top strength.

Prospect Potential:

Scouting reports have described Zether to be a moderate risk, moderate reward type of player. His skating and intensity have both been described as not being at the NHL level, which is what makes him a lower pick than expected. These weaknesses have also made Zether a polarizing player in predictions. However, both of those things are improvable skills that’ll grow as Zether sees more professional playing time and has a variety of experience around him.

Best Potential Fit:

Zether is expected to be a later pick, ranging anywhere from the conclusion of the first round to someplace in the third round. While any team could realistically take Zether because of his size, he could be a potential replacement for Trevor Zegras on the Anaheim Ducks. Zegras and the organization have been in constant trade rumors for quite a while. If Zegras is able to leave Anaheim, it’s not a longshot possibility that the organization will spend the draft looking for another center, even if it’s not an urgent need. (Anaheim has the third pick overall of the 2024 NHL Draft.) If Anaheim plays their later picks well, it’s not unlikely that Zether could be waiting in the wings behind Zegras or taking over for Zegras after some AHL or SHL time.

Final Thoughts

For Simon Zether, the sky’s the limit. Not every prospect is going to be a first-round pick, which is necessary and valued. If both luck and Zether play their cards right, many NHL defensemen’s jobs will be made harder by the tall forward and his hockey intelligence. Zether is a promising prospect who can only grow from more professional experience around a variety of coaching staff and veteran players.

We Got The Jack Inside The Rink

In episode 8 of the Inside The Rink podcast, Matty and Smitty are joined by new co-host Conrad Jack. After the long hiatus, we get back to hockey with a PACKED episode!Matt Rempe & the Devils vs. Rangers Line BrawlCould the Vancouver Canucks squander a playoff opportunity? Have the Winnipeg Jets finally figured out their lines?Flyers Head Coach John Tortorella is a sound byte MACHINEOvechkin is on his way to 895, Who is next?McDavid joins elite company with 100 Assists in a seasonRyan Hartman was suspended 3 Games, was it worth 3 games??Can Auston Matthews hit 70 Goals this season?The Eastern Conference Wild Card race is heating up, who lands the two playoff berths?For all of your hockey news and more from the show, visit us at insidetherink.com and watch us on YouTube! How to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
  1. We Got The Jack
  2. Episode 7. Player Safety First!
  3. Episode 6. Early Trade Season
  4. Episode 5. Longing For The Chiarelli Years
  5. Episode 4. Ottawa’s On Fire

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