Lockout dashes Axelsson's hopes of an NHL return

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Lockout dashes Axelsson's hopes of an NHL return

Add another former Bruins player to the names of hockey players that have fallen victim to an NHL lockout thats unfortunately gaining steam in September: P.J. Axelsson.
The Sweden native and former Bruins forward was denied a chance to return to the NHL one last time due to the uncertainty of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and he instead reported back to his hometown team of Frolunda.
I think I could have closed a deal, but the lockout was such a certainty by mid-August that it made no sense to take a chance and walk away from Frolunda, said P.J. Axelssons Boston-based agent Neil Abbott to CSNNE.com. He is off to a good start with two points in his first three games For Frolunda.
According to Abbott, the defensive forward specialist had an interested NHL suitor over the summer rumored to be the Philadelphia Flyers. Axelsson also had a desire to return to the NHL after spending the last three years in Sweden following a parting of ways with the Bruins.
But it wasnt meant to be this time around for Axelsson.
The 37-year-old Swedish forward spent 12 years with the Boston Bruins before leaving the NHL after scoring 30 points in the 2008-09. The 6-foot-1, 190-pound Axelsson has played three seasons for Frolunda in the Swedish Elite League including posting 14 points in each of the last two seasons while skating for his hometown team.
Axelsson played in 797 career games for the Bruins while putting up 103 goals and 184 assists, and became a dependable third line left winger known for his defensive capabilities and strong leadership qualities. Axelsson has played for only the Bruins and Frolunda during his 19-year professional hockey career in a clear display of location consistency.
Axelsson will be a free agent following the final year of his deal with Frolunda after this season, and perhaps the NHL will once again beckon the affable Swede if of course the CBA snafu has been solved by then.

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

With free agency just around the corner, the Bruins have officially cut ties with former first-round pick and last bastion of the Tyler Seguin trade, Joe Morrow.

The 24-year-old Edmonton native arrived in Boston along with Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith and Matt Fraser in exchange for Seguin when he was shipped to Dallas, and now all of those players have moved on from Boston as well. Boston does still carry Jimmy Hayes on their roster, a player traded from Florida in exchange for Smith, as a last remnant of the Seguin deal, but it isn't expected to be too long before Hayes moves on from Boston as well.  

The B’s announced on Monday afternoon that they hadn’t extended a qualifying offer to Morrow, as well as P-Bruins power forward Colton Hargrove, as a restricted free agent, and that both B’s youngsters were now free to sign with any of the 30 NHL teams as free agents.

The Bruins extended qualifying offers to restricted free agents in Noel Acciari, Linus Arnesson, Austin Czarnik, Zane McIntyre, David Pastrnak, Tim Schaller, Ryan Spooner and Malcolm Subban, and will retain the associated team rights with all of those players. Negotiations are ongoing between the Bruins and Pastrnak continue over a long term deal that would put him in the same $6 million plus per season level as teammate Brad Marchand, but one source with knowledge of the negotiations indicated it’s “not close” to being a done deal.

Some RFA’s like Spooner and Subban might not necessarily fit into the long term plan for the Black and Gold, but they need to maintain their rights if they hope to trade them as valued assets down the line.

Morrow never put together the talent that made him a former first-round pick while he was in Boston, and totaled just one assist in 17 games for the B’s before playing well in five playoff games after getting pushed into duty due to injuries. In all Morrow finished with two goals and nine points along with a minus-8 rating in 65 games over three seasons in Boston, but could never string together an extended run of consistent play at the NHL level.

With the Bruins in the market to bring on another left-shot defenseman into the Boston fold this summer, it was pretty clear that the time had come to move on from Morrow while allowing him to potentially develop as an NHL D-man elsewhere.