Tag Archives: Chicago Blackhawks

Pascal Pelletier(23) Utica Comets

Pascal Pelletier

Undrafted 10th year center Pascal Pelletier(23) returned to North American hockey signing a one-year two-way deal with Vancouver Canucks for 2013/2014.

He spent the last three seasons in the Swiss elite league NLA, skating games for Langnau, putting up close to point-per-game numbers.

The strong skating, stocky 5’11” 196 lbs. forward was reassigned to expansion team Utica Comets and set a new career high assists with 40 in 69 AHL games.

His 62 points were also second highest of his pro career.

He appeared in 3 games with the parent club but failed to hit the score sheet. He’s played 16 total NHL games but has yet to register a point.

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Kent Huskins(29) Utica Comets

Kent Huskins

13-year veteran defenseman Kent Huskins(29) signed an AHL contract to join Utica Comets a month into the 2013/2014 season.

Possibly looking for a new NHL suitor after splitting less than 20 games the previous year with Detroit Red Wings then Philadelphia Flyers, it’s possible he saw a possible opening in the parent club to influence his decision to sign a minor league deal.

He appeared in 65 games with the expansion central New York club adding another 10 points to his league totals (473-33-101-134). He also owns a +33 rating.

The big 6’4″ 205 lbs. blue liner has also skated in 318 contests in the show putting up just 13 goals and 55 assists, but his stay-at-home style and strong defense of his own zone gives him a highly accountable +46 plus/minus.

It took him 5 years of trolling with farm teams before he received his first opportunity to play at the highest level but from there he spent six straight seasons on top.

Not bad for a player that was originally a Chicago Blackhawks‘ 6th round pick in the 1998 draft (#156 overall).

The almost 35-year old could either stay put or try his hand elsewhere but is probably happy earning a decent payday playing  pro hockey.

He won a Stanley Cup Championship in 2007 as a member of Anaheim Ducks.

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Maxime Sauve(7) Norfolk Admirals

Maxime Sauve

Norfolk Admirals‘ center Maxime Sauve(7) has definitely experienced some troubles in his fourth pro season finding a permanent spot on a roster.

Traded to Chicago Blackhawks near the end of last year, the final campaign of his entry level deal, he was left unqualified rendering him an unrestricted free agent going into 2013/2014.

Invited by Anaheim Ducks to their training camp, he was released from his pto and reassigned to their minor league affiliate, where he started the season.

It remains unclear if he ever signed a contract but the 6’1″ 190 lbs. forward skated in 47 AHL games with the team but put up his fewest point totals and was watching contests from the stands on too many occasions.

He has been prone to upper and lower body and concussions throughout his playing time. He was even injured in his one NHL game with Boston Bruins.

Sat for the first game of the Calder Cup Playoffs, he was inserted into the lineup in the 2nd meeting, which was a win evening the series at 1-1.

The 24-year old was the hero scoring the 1st overtime game-winner of a 1-0 game 3 victory.

He’ll no doubt be back to see if he can continue on a streak and help the Admirals into the next round of action.

What happens after the end of the current run is up in the air, as he will once again be unrestricted.

See related: 12/25-10, 2/28-11, 3/14-12

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Mathieu Brisebois(25) Rockford IceHogs

Mathieu Brisebois

Undrafted rookie defenseman Mathieu Brisebois(25) undergoes an address change in his first pro season.

He was traded from Phoenix Coyotes‘ prospect system on reassignment to affiliate Portland Pirates to Chicago Blackhawks‘ farm club Rockford IceHogs.

The somewhat undersized 5’11” 190 lbs. blue liner played in 28 AHL games picking up a goal and three assists with a -5 on a cellar dwelling team but was also a healthy scratch on more than a few occasions.

In his fourth year of QMJHL with Rouyn-Noranda Huskies he led the league in goals, assists and points by a d-man and continued on a similar tear in the playoffs.

The 21-year old signed a three-year entry level deal that keeps him under contract through 2015/2016.

It will be interesting to see if he can parlay his junior hockey finish into producing on the score sheet at the next level.

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Teigan Zahn(33) Utah Grizzlies

Teigan Zahn

Double NHL draft pick defenseman Teigan Zahn(33) was first a Chicago Blackhawks 2008 5th round selection (#132 overall) but went unsigned and back into the pool and later chosen by Tampa Bay Lightning in the 7th round of 2010 (#186 overall) but not tendered an offer. He attended training camps with both teams.

After his overage season serving as captain of WHL Saskatoon Blades in which he posted career bests in games played, assists, points and +39 plus/minus, he decided to go the college route and enrolled at University Of Calgary.

The 6’2″ 221 lbs. blue liner with good size and grit to his game signed a one-year AHL contract with Oklahoma City Barons to start his pro career but was dispatched to affiliate Stockton Thunder, where he stayed for most of his first campaign. He was recalled for a month and appeared in 5 games registering his first point, an assist.

To start his sophomore season he scored a training camp tryout with Anaheim Ducks before he was reassigned to farm club, Norfolk Admirals‘ camp and continued to get passed along landing with Utah Grizzlies.

The 24-year old was again summoned up and got into three more games in the higher league notching yet another assist but was returned a couple of weeks later.

In 42 ECHL games, he has 3 goals and 9 assists putting on pace for career highs in all categories.

He will need to keep connecting and finding his game or he may be looking overseas for his next hockey home.

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Jack Skille(15) Springfield Falcons

Jack Skille

7th year, former Chicago Blackhawks‘ 1st round pick in the 2005 draft (#7 overall) right wing Jack Skille(15) played exclusively in the NHL for the last three seasons, mostly with Florida Panthers after a trade in late 2011.

In that time he skated in 148 games and scored a somewhat underwhelming 15 goals and 26 assists.

At 6’1″ 216 lbs. he’s definitely got power forward size and plays a bit of a laid back version of that style but definitely can get to the net.

As an unrestricted free agent he signed a one-year two-way contract with Columbus Blue Jackets in the off-season and has split time with minor league affiliate Springfield Falcons pretty evenly.

In 12 games with a parent club he has 4 goals and is a +2. In the AHL he’s basically at a point-per-game with 4 strikes and 6 helpers in 11 contests.

Really tough to say where the 26-year old goes next but you have to wonder if he wouldn’t have a breakout year on a wing with some other explosive forwards.

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Kyle Beach(14) Hartford Wolf Pack

Kyle Beach

Chicago Blackhawks‘ 1st round pick in the 2008 draft (#11 overall), 4th year right wing Kyle Beach(14) finally saw his time expire in the team’s prospect system.

Unable to secure an NHL recall while playing with minor league affiliate Rockford IceHogs, he was still qualified for another season after his three-year entry deal was up.

The fairly big 6’3″ 210 lbs. player definitely has power forward size but seems to have a bit of unwillingness to use it where he is for anything more than getting it skirmishes with opponents.

In 175 AHL games he has 41 goals and 36 assists with 4 of those tallies coming in 7 contests in the current campaign.

He was a point-per-game guy though four WHL seasons, while always putting up close to 200 penalty minutes each year. He also concluded his junior hockey career with a +51 rating.

Traded to New York Rangers‘ organization and reassigned to their farm club, Hartford Wolf Pack, he has only notched one assist in 7 contests.

The still super-young 23-year old is only under contract through the end of the season and it’s possible his game will pick up to where it needs to be with the change of scenery, but he’s going to have to connect soon or his ice time may dry up.

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Akim Aliu(78) Hartford Wolf Pack

Akim Aliu1

5th year right wing Akim Aliu(78) is a bit of an enigma.

Originally a Chicago Blackhawks‘ 2nd round pick in the 2007 draft (#56 overall), the rough and tough forward has only played in 7 NHL games while under contract with Calgary Flames, who picked up the last year of his entry level contract, then qualified him for another season.

In his first pair of big league games he notched a pair of goals and an assist but through his next five contests in last year’s lockout shortened season he failed to connect with the score sheet.

The 6’4″ 225 lbs. power forward spent most of his time with farm club Abbotsford Heat, where in 84 games he’s collected a sparse 14 goals and 11 assists with an unsettling -20 rating.

Through 214 AHL contests his point totals are surprisingly low.

It’s fairly well documented that the still young 24-year old has temper and attitude problems, which probably has a lot to do with his limited success.

He started the current campaign on a try-out contract with Hamilton Bulldogs but was released after 14 games.

Picked up a month later by a struggling Hartford Wolf Pack, in a pair of appearances he scored his first tally with the team, has one fight and unloaded 5 shots on net.

He seems to fit with the team pretty well but without a sizable increase of offense production, it seems unlikely he’ll be given an spc to stay through the regular season.

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Andrew Ebbett(32) WBS Penguins

Andrew Ebbett

8th year undrafted left wing Andrew Ebbett(32) wasted no time in free agency signing a one-year, two-way deal to join Pittsburgh Penguins‘ system for a season.

In 8 AHL games with minor league affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins he already has a tidy 2 goals and 5 assists. He’s pretty much a point per game guy in the league at 78 goals and 165 assists in 254 games, now skating with his 6th team. He also owns a remarkable +32 rating.

He’s less prolific in the NHL scoring 25 tallies and 39 helpers in 191 games under contracts with 7 different teams but also has an accountable +3 plus/minus.

The small 5’9″ 174 lbs. forward is looked to for bursts of energy he brings to the table and that kind of spark plug often results in wins.

It will be interesting to see where the 30-year old ends up next but he can almost assuredly expect a recall to the parent club before the seasons out, which would give him NHL appearances in his last 7 seasons.

 

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Aaron Johnson(44) New York Rangers

Aaron Johnson

11th year defenseman Aaron Johnson(44) signs a 1-year, 1-way contract with New York Rangers, his 7th NHL team.

He was made their affiliate Hartford Wolf Pack team captain to start the season and there could be similar thoughts like what Nashville Predators did when signing him to a one-year deal, ship him to their minor league affiliate, Milwaukee Admirals for the season. But the parent club’s slow out of the gate and may need to switch things up even further, which would open the door for the 30-year defenseman to get some more games in the show on his stat sheet.

He’s played 297 big league games scoring 17 times with 45 assists and a nifty little +1 rating.

In the AHL his numbers are sort of phantomly similar with 26 goals and 86 helpers but he has a -5 plus/minus.

The former Columbus Blue Jackets‘ 3rd round pick in the 2001 draft (#85 overall) still has some left in the tank.

A couple of seasons ago, back with the team that drafted him, he put up a career tying 3 goals and a high mark 13 assists.

We think it’s likely he gets to the 300 NHL game club this season.

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