The 20th round of the Swedish Super League finished off 2017 and the top of the table looks predominantly similar to what it looked like after round 10, with Örebro’s journey on the Titanic to 13th place as the only exception. The current playoffs will be the same as last year if the current standings will last, perhaps a vague statement with 15 rounds left but considering the patterns we’ve seen since round 10, Dalen (8th) and Mullsjö (7th) shouldn’t feel too threatened as long as they display their notorious spurts towards the end of the regular season.
Jönköpings IK made an impressive climb from 11th to 9th place, an effort deserving of standing ovations from the old newcomers who got their hands on two additional points after beating Höllviken in sudden a few days before 2018. At the same time, JIK’s latest three points came on the 25th of November which means that none of the teams below them managed to close that gap during the month it was open. There is evidently some struggling under JIK in the table, especially for Team Thorengruppen who are still stuck on 14th place, this time six points behind Örebro on 13th place.
From wasteland to paradise; Falun (1st) and Storvreta (2nd) are still hinting about the final with their consecutively successful performances, despite some issues with injuries on both parts. Jimmie Pettersson’s comeback from his broken collarbone has been effective to say the least. Three assists in their win against AIK followed by three goals in their win against Uppsala-rivals Sirius makes him a fine-tuned weapon for the rest of the season. Another missed performance artist is Alexander Rudd who’s made a few subs, still without points but if he comes back to being even remotely close to his absolute best then one of the spots in the final has been reserved.
Falun lost against Linköping in round 13, a game which none of them brought their heads to, but won every other game and are still undefeated at home in Jalas Arena, which happens to be where they are welcoming Storvreta tomorrow. Alexander Galante Carlström suffered a minor ankle injury from a Stiga Snowracer accident, which fair enough is designed for children, and is currently not 100% recovered for the game tomorrow.
While Pixbo (3rd) have performed beyond most expectations and Linköping (4th) have stepped up in their more crucial games, there’s still another gear to reach before either of them will be a real threat to Falun and Storvreta once they’ve all reached their peak for the playoffs.
As I mentioned in the wrap-up at round 10, 5th – 8th are becoming a lot clearer, now with the same teams who made it to playoffs last year meaning it’s a difficult line to cross for the teams chasing. With 15 rounds left, the only vague placement is whichever team will end up on 13th place and get relegated with Team Thorengruppen but as Höllviken taught us last season, that’ll be hard to predict until 20 seconds left of the last round.
2018 could obviously not get a better start than Storvreta travelling to Falun for a game full of them not playing extremely defensive and dull floorball as in their last clash, but a more explosive one with one team actually wanting to win more than the other. At the same time we’ll witness one of the more interesting races between Jönköping and Höllviken, two of the fresher teams who are at least poking at the playoffs on a good day, as long as they manage to step it up when the more experienced teams do.