Next up in our annual prospect review and forecast series is Axel Jonsson-Fjallby, forward for the Hershey Bears. (You can access all of our Capitals Prospect Reports and player analysis on our “Prospects” page right here.)
Axel Jonsson-Fjällby (AJF) is a 22-year-old left-handed winger from Stockholm, Sweden. He was a 5th round draft pick (#147 overall) in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, and signed to a three-year entry-level contract with the Capitals on May 1, 2018, for $860,000 AAV. He will be a restricted free agent at the end of the 2020-2021 season.
The 2017-2018 season saw Jonsson-Fjallby play his first full season in the Swedish Hockey League (Djurgardens) where he registered seven goals and nine assists in 42 games played.
His high-water mark for the season came during the World Junior Championships where he made several eye-popping plays. Our piece on his play at the tournament, along with highlight video can be read here. A translated interview with Jonsson-Fjallby conducted after Sweden’s victory over the Czech Republic can be found here. His break-away speed is on display in the second highlight video.
Another high-point for Jonsson-Fjallby came in the 2018 postseason when he scored a pair of goals in a playoff game on March 24th against Linköping (recap and video here.) Overall, he had five goals and one assist for six points in postseason play.
AJF had a decent training camp with the Washington Capitals prior to the 2018-2019 season, but was ultimately re-assigned to Hershey on September 26. He played in 16 games with the Bears, registering two goals and an assist, before exercising an option in his contract and returning to Sweden.
AJF’s regular season with Djurgården was disappointing, scoring just one goal and nine assists in 36 games played. At one point late in the regular season, AJF was even a healthy scratch.
However, the postseason was another story for AJF. Part of his battle cry the previous summer was wanting to win a title for Djurgården. He fell one game short of that goal, losing to Frolunda in game 7 of the SHL final on May 2, 2019. AJF scored seven goals and five assists in 19 postseason games.
A majority of his postseason goals came on nice defensive plays/steals of the puck in his own zone, and rocketing down the ice, outskating the opposition, and finishing one on one with the goaltender. His potential value on the penalty kill was on display. Video of his postseason goals can be found in the related links at the bottom of this article.
Following the conclusion of Djurgarden’s postseason, Axel was reassigned to Hershey on May 6th, but he did not see any action for the Bears.
The 2019-2020 season was technically a rookie season for AJF. He recorded 12 goals and 11 assists in 61 games played. He was third in points and second in goals among all Bears rookies. AJF was a major contributor to Hershey’s highly-ranked penalty kill, rarely taking penalties, with just 10 penalty minutes on the season.
2019-2020 MONTH-BY-MONTH RECAP AND TREND ANALYSIS
The following month-by-month breakdown is an aggregation of our monthly prospect reports prepared during the 2019-2020 season. You can find all of our weekly and monthly prospect reports on our “Prospects” page in the top menu.
What a difference a year makes. Last season, Jonsson-Fjallby posted two goals and an assist in 16 games with Hershey before heading back home to Sweden. He has already surpassed those totals in nine games this season. The Stockholm native is tied for the team lead in goals with four and has an assist, with one of his goals being a shorthanded tally. He has been making the most of his chances, as his four goals have come on just 11 shots. Jonsson-Fjallby has teamed with Brian Pinho and Beck Malenstyn to give the Bears a quality fourth-line that has been producing offensively. The Swede has also seen time on the penalty kill and his play in his own zone has improved. Last season, he was a minus-5 in his brief stint. This season he is a team best plus-4.
Trending – Up
After a hot start, Jonsson-Fjallby has cooled off offensively. He is currently on a nine-game point drought and has not scored a goal since November 1. The Stockholm, Sweden native is still contributing on the penalty kill and continues to play responsibly in his own zone. He is a plus-4, which is the best rating among Hershey forwards (and second on the team).
Jonsson-Fjallby ended a 14-game scoreless streak with an assist on Brian Pinho’s goal in the first period against Bridgeport on December 14. The next night, the Swede snapped a 15-game goalless drought when he tipped in Martin Fehervary’s shot in the first period against Lehigh Valley. The Stockholm, Sweden native added a goal in Hershey’s next game against Springfield (the overtime game winner) and assisted on two goals against Utica to end the month with five points. Jonsson-Fjallby sees a lot of time on the penalty kill and has been a big component of the unit’s rise to second in the league. He is tied for the team lead with three shorthanded points. For the season, Axel has seven goals and five assists in 32 games played. He’s registered 48 shots for a shooting percentage of 14.6% on the season.
Jonsson-Fjallby ended a six-game scoreless drought when he netted the Bears’ first goal at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on January 10. He recorded a two-goal game against Cleveland the following night. One of those goals was his first power play goal of the season. He completed the month with three goals and two assists to push his season point total to 17. The Swede does the little things well. Against Hartford on January 8, Jonsson-Fjallby blocked a shot with his stick to break up a scoring chance late in the first period. On January 19, he held onto the puck in the second period while the Bears made a line change and ended up drawing a penalty against Rochester. Jonsson-Fjallby is a big contributor on high end penalty kill. For the season, Axel has 10 goals and seven assists in 47 games played.
The Swede is consistent if nothing else. He scored five points in October, December and January, with November his only down month. In February, Jonsson-Fjallby recorded six points, the most he has recorded in a month this season. He dished out two helpers against Lehigh Valley on February 16, including the primary assist on Beck Malenstyn’s third period, game-winning goal. That game was the start of a three-game point streak for Jonsson-Fjallby. The Stockholm, Sweden native is a major contributor to Hershey’s highly-ranked penalty kill and he rarely takes penalties, having 10 penalty minutes on the season. As a result, he is usually available to kill penalties.
Axel had a pretty good rookie campaign. He was on track for 15 goals and 20 assists, which would be a pretty goal for the season. His speed will always be his greatest asset, but he also show improvement with his work inside the zone, and work as long the boards. He recorded just 104 shots, which is in the low end, finishing with a shooting percentage of 11.5% for the season. He was key special teams player for the Bears this season. He could score as many short-handed goals as Pinho once he finds his spots on the penalty kill.
Jonsson-Fjallby will likely spend another year in Hershey, looking to increase his number of shots, and improving his defense. He has a shot in the next 12-24 months for a bottom six appearance for the Capitals.
Axel Jonsson-Fjallby’s Game Is “Flowing” Well
Connor McMichael Records 4th Hat Trick, Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Scores 3 Goals in 2 Games, Beck Malenstyn Returns: Week 17 Prospect Report
Bears Fall To Penguins, 2-1 On Controversial Goal; Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Scores 12th Goal Of the Season
Bears Beat Monsters 4-2, Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Scores Two Goals
Bears Beat Thunderbirds 2-1 In Overtime, Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Scores Game Winner
Connor McMichael, Aliaksei Protas and Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Continue Hot Streaks: Capitals Prospect Weekly Report
Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Continues Hot Streak; Connor McMichael, Aliaksei Protas Have Multi-Goal Weekends: Washington Capitals Prospect Weekly Report
Capitals’ Prospect Axel Jonnson-Fjallby Producing In SHL Playoffs
Axel Jonsson-Fjällby Continues To Heat-Up in SHL Post Season
Capitals’ Prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Scores Two Goals in Djurgården Playoff Victory
Capitals Prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjällby Finally Breaks Out Of Scoring Slump
Axel Jonsson-Fjallby’s Struggles Continue In Return to SHL
Capitals Prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Selected For National Team
Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Returns to Sweden
Axel Jonsson-Fjällby is Adjusting To Life in Hershey and the American Hockey League
Bears Beat Penguins 3-2 For First Win Of the Season; Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Scores First Goal
Reports of Capitals Forward Prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjallby Returning to Sweden are False
Gersich and Jonsson-Fjallby Score in Hershey Debuts
Capitals’ Prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjallby: “I’m Not Going to Lie, I’m a Little Bit Nervous”
Capitals Prospect Axel Jonsson-Fjallby: “I have to know if I’m ready for North America or need a season in Sweden”
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Report: Capitals Sign Axel Jonsson-Fjällby
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By Jon Sorensen