Capitals Return Hardy Haman Aktell To AHL Hershey

The Washington Capitals have loaned defenseman Hardy Häman Aktell to the Hershey Bears ahead of their Saturday night matchup against the Columbus Blue Jackets. This move comes as Trevor van Riemsdyk is set to make his return to the lineup after missing the past four games due to a lower-body injury. 

From the Capitals

The Washington Capitals have loaned defenseman Hardy Häman Aktell to the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today.

Häman Aktell, 25, has recorded one assist in six games with Washington this season. The 6’3”, 216-pound defenseman made his NHL debut on Oct. 21 at Montreal and recorded his first career NHL assist and point on Oct. 29 vs. San Jose. In addition, Häman Aktell has scored one goal in two games with Hershey this season.

Originally drafted by the Nashville Predators in the fourth round (108th overall) of the 2016 NHL Draft, Häman Aktell signed with the Capitals in April after spending the last three seasons with the Växjö Lakers of the Swedish Hockey League (SHL).

Häman Aktell recorded 36 points (9g, 27a) in 51 games with Växjö in 2022-23. The Kåge, Sweden native led Växjö in plus/minus (+23), ranked second on the team in assists and points and tied for third among SHL defenseman in points. Häman Aktell added seven points (3g, 4a) and recorded a +6 plus/minus rating in 18 playoff games, helping Växjö capture the SHL championship for the second time in three years. In 151 career SHL games with Växjö, Häman Aktell recorded 63 points (17g, 46a).

Prior to joining Växjö in 2020-21, Häman Aktell recorded 16 points (6g, 10a) in 45 games with IF Björklöven of HockeyAllsvenskan (Sweden-2) during the 2019-20 season and six points (1g, 5a) in 34 games during the 2018-19 season.

By Jacob Cheris

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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9 Responses to Capitals Return Hardy Haman Aktell To AHL Hershey

  1. novafyre says:

    I want to see our best prospects get game ice time. If it’s with the Caps, great, but if not, I’d rather see them on Bears ice than sitting in the press box. Players always say that playing in a game is very different than in practice or in a scrimmage. And I believe them.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Aktell > LuJo

    • Anonymous says:

      absolutely nope

      • Anonymous says:

        LuJo may play better than HHA in spurts, but I would say the better long term prospect is HHA. Hardy is a good example of a New Age defenseman: can move the puck, and provide offense. LuJo probably will provide next to no offense. He’s another John Erskine, with little long term potential, other than, perhaps, as a 7th defenseman.

        • Anonymous says:

          HHA is not an offensive minded defensman, he might’ve put up points in the SHL, but thats just the nature of him being the one of the better defensemen in that league. He offers little offensive upside to the NHL and also has skating issues, which is why he was never signed by the Preds before his rights expired. Johansen is that new age style defenseman (quick skater and good in breakouts), but just like HHA the offense is limited because he isn’t going to be the best defenseman on an NHL team or on the PP. LuJo is more of a Jensen type player, smooth skating and good on the breakout.

  3. Diane Doyle says:

    Aktell is a good asset. It seems we have a logjam of Left-handed defensemen which made we wonder why we acquired Edmundson to begin with when we already had LuJo and Alex Alex. The latter looked relatively ready last season. I understand wanting competition for the last role. But with three young guys competing for the last role, why did we need to spend draft choices to get a 6th defenseman? I’m sure there’s plenty that Edmundson can do to help a team but he just did not impress me as what the team needed. (Now I can’t recall if they acquired Aktell before or after Edmundson.)

    If I were reading the tea leaves on D pairings, I’d guess that tomorrow’s group would be:

    1st pairing — JC and LuJo
    2nd pairing — Jensen and Sandin
    3rd pairing — TVR and Alex A.

    I figure Edmundson comes back next Wednesday. Fehervary not long after that. And now more decisions need to be made on who to keep and who to send away, to either Hershey or in a trade.

  4. DWGie26 says:

    Will be great to have TVR (and a righty) back in play. Aktell to Hershey is the right move as clearly Alexyev and LuJo are before him. Plus, and this is big… Aktell is waiver exempt so you make that move first. When Fever come back, I think they keep 8 Dee (including LuJo and Alexyev) and only 13 forwards.

    I think LuJo would have passed waivers a month ago. Now he is looking good in the 1LD spot and won’t clear so you can’t send either down. Furthermore, if LuJo continues to look good paired with JC74, then they might want to move one of Edmundson, Alexyev, LuJo, or Aktell. I’d move whichever one can fetch the most value (or is in the most demand). I suspect the Caps will least want to move Aktell solely based on his waiver exempt status which carries a lot of value for Caps. Edmundson may carry the most demand/value as an experienced NHL defensemen who only costs 1.75M. Good for a contender under pressure to win in their “window”.

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