Boston Bruins Anton Blidh Could Be The Next P.J. Axelsson


Per Johan Axelsson was a fan favourite with the Boston Bruins fans for 11 seasons, due to his hard work ethic and defensive expertise. This preseason, we may be seeing the new version of Axelsson in fellow Swedish forward, Anton Blidh.

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  • Drafted in 2013, in the 6th round at 180th overall, Blidh was signed this year and has already stood out as the type of player that the Boston management is looking for. He plays exceedingly well defensively for such a young age and is not afraid to go into the dirty areas. According to hockey prospect website Hockey’s Future, Anton Blidh “projects as a physical, two-way lower line forward similar in style to former Bruin P.J. Axelsson.”

    All of these traits were evident in the Bruins most recent preseason game against the Washington Capitals. Blidh was all over the ice and always seemed to be in the middle of things whenever the whistle blew. He was able to draw a penalty against the Capitals in the first period and caused a number of turn overs along with some scoring opportunities.

    For most of the game, he played on a line with Justin Hickman and veteran Chris Kelly. If Claude Julien is already putting Anton Blidh with a lower line leader like Kelly, one does not have to think long on what the Bruins management has in store for the young Swedish grinder.

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    Needless to say, it appears that, at an early age, Anton already “Blidhs” Black & Gold. Being compared to, possibly, a home country idol, in P.J. Axelsson, that works within the same organization doesn’t hurt either. Axelsson, who is now head of European Scouting for the Boston Bruins and a member of the Bruins development camp staff, will be a good role model for Blidh to mirror and may even take the young prospect under his wing when the opportunity presents itself.

    Blidh will most likely be sent down to the Providence Bruins training camp sooner rather than later. However, he has definitely gotten the attention of the Boston Bruins and has every chance of eventually making the team in the coming years.

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