2021-22 Team: Skellefteå AIK (SHL)
Date of Birth: July 30, 2002
Place of Birth: Skellefteå, Sweden
Height: 6-foot-0, Weight: 179 pounds
NHL Draft Eligibility: Third Year Eligible
Måns Forsfjäll is a Swedish defenseman who has an effective two-way game, though it doesn’t always show on the scoresheet. Forsfjäll’s calling card is his defensive game, which is quite proficient for a 19-year-old defender playing in one of the best professional hockey leagues in the world. The 2021-22 season was his first as a full-time player in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL) and Fjorsfäll didn’t look out of place while defending the much higher competition.
Defensive defensemen are often at a disadvantage when it comes to scouting, since counting statistics like points are a very simple (and narrow) way to evaluate a prospect, and many defenders with stout defensive games are overlooked due to a lack of offensive production. I believe that Forsfjäll falls into this category, since he hasn’t produced offense at a very high level over the last few years. He is still a very well-rounded defenseman who is quite agile around the offensive blue line, which shows his potential as a member of a power play.
Skating and strength are two areas where Forsfjäll excels. His effort and positioning on defense makes him an excellent penalty killer with the speed and smooth skating required to drive offense off the rush.
Related: 2022 NHL Draft Guide
Forsfjäll was selected to be a member of Team Sweden at the postponed 2022 World Junior Championship (WJC) tournament that will be taking place in August 2022. The team boasts many skilled offensive defensemen such as Detroit Red Wings prospects Simon Edvinsson and William Wallinder as well as 2022 draft-eligible prospect Mattias Havelid. If Forsfjäll earns meaningful minutes at this tournament, I would expect him to be paired with a more dynamic offensive defenseman as a bit of a safety net for them should they overextend themselves.
Other THW Draft Profiles
Måns Fjorsfäll – NHL Draft Projection
The only place where I could find a ranking for Forsfjäll is on the NHL Central Scouting’s list of European skaters. If he is drafted, I would expect it to be in either the sixth or seventh round. If he shows well at the 2022 WJC, and shows a bit of improvement in his second full SHL season, then I see no reason why Forsfjäll wouldn’t be signed as a European free agent next offseason should he go undrafted in his final year of eligibility.
“He has an active stick that he uses well both at equal strength and while killing penalties. Along the boards, he uses his body well to get a stoppage or to win the puck.” – EliteProspects 2020 NHL Draft Guide, Elite Prospects
- Defensive instincts
- Penalty killing
- Agility and speed
Under Construction (Improvements to make)
- Lacks dangerous shot
- Not a big threat on offense
Forsfjäll has the potential to be a shutdown defender who plays a depth role as the sixth or seventh defender on an NHL team who can be counted on in important moments as well as on the penalty kill. I don’t expect him to ever put up many points in the NHL, but he has the skills to succeed as a defensive defenseman. I believe that after playing the 2022-23 season in the SHL, Forsfjäll will be ready to make the jump to the American Hockey League (AHL) if the team who owns his signing rights wants him in North America.
Risk – 3.5/5, Reward – 2.5/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offense – 2.5/10, Defense – 7.5/10
- Selected for Team Sweden at the 2022 U20 WJC
Logan is a sports writer for the Detroit Red Wings as a member of The Hockey Writers team. He loves reading about statistics and advanced analytics, and discovering how they can enrich his hockey analysis and writing. Logan also writes about more general hockey topics on his blog https://www.crashthecrease.blog.