In what’s been a quiet summer as of late, the Florida Panthers continued doing business by adding more depth to their minor league system.
23 years of age, from Riga, Latvia, Abols has spent the past two seasons with Orebro HK in Sweden (SHL). During his first year with Orebro, Abols participated in 26 games, only recording one point (an assist).
Due to his struggles with Orebro in his first season with the club, Abols was loaned out to BIK Karlskoga of the Allsvenskan (Sweden’s second highest division).
Featuring in 18 outings in the second division, Abols almost reached point-per-game measures, recording 7G, 10A, for 17 points altogether.
After impressing his parent club during his stint in the second division, Abols improved dramatically in his second season with Orebro, putting up 26 points (18G & 8A) in 45 games.
Internationally, Abols has represented Latvia through all levels (men and juniors) across the board, appearing in four IIHF World Championships. With a grand total of 24 games through those tournaments, Abols owns a tally of 2G, 5A, for 7 points.
Additionally, Abols was originally drafted in the seventh-round (184th overall) of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft by the Vancouver Canucks.
Abols is regarded as a “gritty player,” who’s unafraid to use his large frame to get in the corners to dig loose pucks out. While Rodrigo is certainly labeled as a hard worker, he’s also an intelligent player who can play with and without the puck.
Now signed with the Florida Panthers, Abols will play the 2019-20 pro-hockey season in North America. Whether that be in the minors or the big leagues, Abols will have the opportunity to fight for a spot on the Panthers roster in the upcoming training camp.
While his chances of making the team may not be very high, Abols still serves as a reliable depth option in the minors, who can be counted on to play in a bottom line role when needed.