News and notes from around the NHL this evening:
- The Detroit Red Wings reassigned forward Mitch Callahan back down to the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins. Callahan went pointless in his four games this March while averaging 7:15min a night. The former sixth round draft pick fared better in the AHL, where he put up 14G and 22A in 53 games. Callahan is in the final year of his contract—worth $600K at the NHL level—and though he was drafted by the New York Rangers in 2009, he’s only played for the Red Wings organization so far in his career.
- Arizona Coyotes defenseman Zbynek Michalek makes his season debut tonight against the Nashville Predators, reports AZ Central’s Sarah McLellan. Michalek has spent the entire season with the Tucson Roadrunners in the AHL, scoring 6G and 8A in 43 games. He also scored one goal in three World Cup of Hockey games for his native Czech Republic. This is Michalek’s third stint with the Coyotes. He was signed by the Minnesota Wild in 2001 but traded to the Coyotes in 2005. The Coyotes then traded Michalek to the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2010 only to acquire him right back in 2012. He was then traded to the St. Louis Blues in 2015 before re-signing with Arizona in the offseason.
- Boston Bruins forward David Backes will play tonight against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Bruins announced that Backes joined the team for warmups after missing the pregame skate this morning due to illness. The Bruins will need all hands on deck tonight as they play the Maple Leafs in a game with significant playoff importance. The Maple Leafs are only three points back of the Bruins for 3rd in the Atlantic Division, and the Maple Leafs have a game in hand.