An otherwise routine training camp in Ottawa spiced up on Friday, as GM Bryan Murray announced the club had suspended d-man prospect Mikael Wikstrand, who has returned to his native Sweden.
A late-round pick in 2012, Wikstrand had emerged into a top prospect prior to his departure (and, per Murray, he still is.)
The 21-year-old scored 20 points in 46 games last year for Frolunda and, prior to that, was a key member of Sweden’s silver medal-winning team at the ’13 World Juniors, leading the squad in d-man scoring.
Per Sportsnet, Wikstrand informed the Sens he would play for the organization this year — presumably in AHL Binghamton — while attending development camp earlier this summer.
Per his agent, Todd Reynolds, the change of heart and subsequent return home is for “personal reasons.”
It certainly doesn’t sound like Wikstrand will be able to play in Sweden without a fight. Murray said he can be a “grocery clerk” or “play beer league,” but not join a SHL club.