2008-09: Carl Klingberg spent most of the year with Frolunda Jr. in the Swedish under-20 league, scoring 13 goals and 13 assists in 35 games. In 10 games with Frolunda in the Elite (men’s) league, he recorded two goals and one assist. Klingberg was also with Sweden’s U-18 team, scoring 2 goals and 2 assists in six games as well as being loaned to Boras in the Swedish second division. In eight games with Boras he scored 4 goals with 2 assists.
2009-10: After attending the Thrashers prospect camp, Klingberg returned to Sweden for his first full season in th eElite League with Frolunda. In 42 games, mostly in fourth line duty, he scored 6 goals with 7 assists, despite averaging less than 8 minutes of ice time per game. He also appeared in all seven games of seventh-place Frolunda’s first round playoff loss to Linkoping, though he did not register a point. In four games with Boras he had five assists. Klingberg was also selected to Sweden’s U-20 team, scoring one goal in five games.
2010-11: A much-anticipated import from Sweden, Klingberg made his North American debut late in 2011. Scoring once in 8 AHL games was a relatively inauspicious start but he showed a penchant for the big hitting physical game that fans in Frolunda, Sweden will now be missing.
2011-12: Klingberg made his NHL debut in December — skating in six games with the Jets — and played 66 games for Winnipeg AHL affiliate St. John’s in his first full season in North America. He had no points with 4 penalty minutes and was minus-1; averaging 5:29 minutes of ice time with the Jets. In 66 AHL games for the IceCaps he scored 15 goals with 22 assists and was plus-2 with 39 penalty minutes. St. John’s finished first in the Atlantic Division and reached the Calder Cup finals against Norfolk. Klingberg scored 1 goal with 1 assist and was an even plus/minus in 12 playoff games.
2012-13: Klingberg played in 66 AHL games with St. John’s in his second pro season in North America. He scored 11 goals with 12 assists and was minus-6 with 40 penalty minutes. The IceCaps missed the playoffs after finishing last in the Atlantic Division.
2013-14: Klingberg, after not seeing any ice time in his first two NHL call-ups, made his NHL debut with the Jets in April — skating in three games for Winnipeg in his third season in the Winnipeg organization. He skated in 65 of 76 games for Jets AHL affiliate St. John’s. Klingberg scored his first NHL goal in the season finale against Calgary, a 5-3 win. He was plus-2 with no penalties; averaging nine minutes of ice time in his brief stint with the Jets. He scored 22 goals with 20 assists and was plus-15 with 42 penalty minutes in the regular season with St. John’s. The IceCaps finished second in the Atlantic Division but reached the Eastern Conference finals, defeating Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, before falling to the Texas Stars in the Calder Cup Finals. Klingberg scored 3 goals with 5 assists and was plus-6 with 14 penalty minutes in 21 playoff games. He signed a one-year contract with the Jets as a restricted free agent in July 2014.
Klingberg's work ethic and his top notch skating skills are the strength of his game. He uses his significant size well and accelerates quickly. His technical skills and hockey sense are slightly above average, at best, but he loves driving to the net and creates a lof of scoring chances simply by using his quick feet. His biggest challenge will be to develop the patience and ability to recognize scoring opportunities more consistently.
Klingberg's intensity is especially apparent on the forecheck and his aggressivenss in all three zones make him a difficult player to play against. He has good timing in his hits and rarely puts himself out of the play despite his physical style of play.
Klingberg is back with Winnipeg AHL affiliate St. John's at the start of his fourth pro season in 2014-15. Once viewed as a sure thing to be a regular in the lineup for the Thrashers and then Jets, it is beginning to look like that might not be the case. With several promising forwards in the pipeline, his ceiling with Winnipeg may be that of a a high-end AHL player who can be called up in emergency situations. Still only 23 years old, Klingberg may have to go to elsewhere or head to Europe to get a full-time opportunity to be more than that.