News came on Tuesday that Washington Capitals prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjallby has now been preliminarily relegated to the 13th (extra) forward position for Wednesday’s game against Malmo, dropping him from his usual RW position on the second line for Djurgården. Jonsson-Fjällby has been replaced by Emil Bemström. The demotion is likely a combination of Bemström‘s scoring ability and Jonsson-Fjällby’s rather lackluster showing since his return to the Swedish Hockey League (SHL) from Hershey in mid-November.
In 26 games since returning to Djurgården, Jonsson-Fjällby has no goals and just seven assists. Before being loaned to Djurgården, Jonsson-Fjällby had two goals and one assist in 16 games for AHL Hershey.
Jonsson-Fjallby has had success before in the Swedish Hockey League. He had seven goals and nine assists in 42 games played for Djurgården last season, including a playoff game where he scored two goals. He also had two shorthanded goals and two assists in last years World Junior Chmpionships.
However, as with any line change, today’s move is likely temporary. “We don’t know. Right now he is one of 13. We’ll see, said Djurgården Head coach Robert Ohlsson. “It is not carved in stone, it may well be that Fjällby plays there tomorrow,” said Ohlsson.
Djurgården’s preliminary lines against Malmö
Daniel Brodin, Sebastian Strandberg, Jakob Lilja
Jonathan Davidsson, Marcus Davidsson, Emil Bemström
Dick Axelsson, Petteri Wirtanen, Mattias Guter
Niclas Bergfors, Dennis Svensson, Henrik Eriksson.
Extra forward: Axel Jonsson Fjällby
Regardless of his current line assignments, it’s clear Jonsson-Fjällby is struggling in the SHL this season, and finding it difficult to return to last season’s form. However, Jonsson-Fjällby has proven he can play at the top-level in Sweden, and produce offensively. It may be just a matter of re-acclimation and change from his North American playing time.
On May 2, 2018, the Capitals signed the fifth round draft pick in 2016 (#147 overall) to a three-year entry-level deal at $860,000 average annual value (AAV).
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By Jon Sorensen