2009-10: Pontus Aberg played in 11 games for Djurgardens in the SuperElit (U20) league and skated for the the club in Allsvenskan and Elit league play at the U18 level. He represented Sweden at the 2010 U17 World Hockey Challenge. Aberg had 1 assist with 4 penalty minutes in Super Elit play. In 19 Allsvenskan games (including five playoff contests), Aberg was the team’s leading scorer with 11 goals and 23 assists. In 22 Elit games he scored 22 goals with 17 assists. On the bronze medal-winning U17 WHC team, which featured NHL first-rounders Mika Zibanejad and Oscar Klefbom, Aberg scored 2 goals and had 4 penalty minutes in six games.
2010-11: Aberg made his Elitserien debut, dressing in one game for Djurgardens, while spending most of the season with the club’s U20 squad. In 4 games with the U20 team he scored 13 goals with 17 assists and was plus-11 with 16 penalty minutes as Djurgardens was the top team in the North Division. In four playoff games he scored 2 goals with 3 assists and was an even plus/minus for bronze medal-winning Djurgardens. Aberg also skated for Djurgardens silver medal-winning U18 team. In 11 games (including three playoff contests) he scored 11 goals with 9 assists and 29 penalty minutes.
2011-12: Aberg skated in 47 Elitserien league games as an 18-year-old and was one of four finalists for the league’s Rookie of the Year award. One of the few bright spots in a disappointing season for the club, Aberg averaged 11:33 of ice time per game. He scored 8 goals with 7 assists and was minus-3 with 6 penalty minutes. Aberg skated in seven of ten games during the relegation playoffs which saw Djurgardens demoted to Allsvenskan for 2012-13. He scored one goal and was an even plus/minus in limited ice time. Aberg played seven games for Djurgardens U20 (including one playoff game) and scored 5 goals with 2 assists. Aberg was rated sixth among European skaters in Central Scouting’s final rankings prior to the 2012 NHL Draft.
2012-13: Aberg was the leading scorer for Djurgardens in Sweden in his second year with the club. In 52 games he scored 12 goals with 28 assists and was +13 with 6 penalty minutes. Playing in Sweden’s Allsvenskan (second league), Djurgardens finished fifth in the regular season and did not qualify for the Kval Series. In six playoff games Aberg scored 3 goals with 1 assist and was -1 with 2 penalty minutes. He played nine games with Sweden’s U20 team, scoring 3 goals with 2 assists and finishing +5 with 2 penalty minutes, but was not selected for the silver-medal winning squad that went to Ufa, Russia. In March 2013 he signed a contract to play for Farjestad in the SHL in 2013-14.
2013-14: Aberg was the second-leading scorer for Farjestads in the SHL as a 20-year-old and signed a three-year entry-level contract with Nashville in May. He scored 15 goals with 16 assists and was +2 with 41 penalty minutes in 52 games during the regular season. Farjestad finished fifth in the regular season but reached the playoff finals against regular season champion Skelleftea. Aberg scored two goals with two assists and was minus-five with four penalty minutes in 13 playoff games.
2014-15: Aberg skated for Nashville AHL affiliate Milwaukee in his first season in North America. After getting off to a fast start for the Admirals, he finished the year with 16 goals and 18 assists in 69 games and was -7 with 28 penalty minutes. Aberg scored five of his 16 goals on the Milwaukee power play. The Admirals missed the playoffs, finishing fifth in the Midwest Division.
Aberg is a speedy player with some high caliber offensive skills. The two-way winger has good hockey sense, passes the puck well, and possesses a hard accurate shot. He has good one-on-one ability which can be a challenge for the defense and he gets pucks off of his stick quickly in tight areas. Aberg has a strong work ethic and competes hard, but has some consistency issues. He needs to get stronger to play along the boards against bigger, more physical men.
Aberg will challenge for a roster spot with the Predators in training camp but is likely to start the 2015-16 season with AHL affiliate Milwaukee. With one year of experience under his belt, he should be more prepared for the longer season and be better able to maintain the high level of play he showed at the start of the 2014-15 season. He is a gifted offensive player and his ability to develop the other areas of his game will determine when he makes the jump to the NHL on a permanent basis. His skill set suggests he can be a consistent second or third line scorer at the NHL level.