It’s been the busiest day of training camp from a transactions standpoint, with countless cuts and a waiver wire chock full of talent. NHL teams are making the difficult decisions in preparation for Opening Day. However, some of those moves have repercussions on the rosters of AHL teams as well. On a day that’s not lacking in noteworthy news, don’t forget to keep up with the smaller moves as well:
- Former Colorado Avalanche prospect Mason Geertsen has found a new home in the AHL. The 24-year-old defenseman was not extended a qualifying offer by the Avs this summer, despite coming off a career-high 16-point minor league campaign, but Geertsen managed to impress in camp with the Hartford Wolf Pack. The team announced that Geertsen has signed a one-year AHL contract. At 6’4” and 220 lbs., Geertsen is a dominant force in the defensive end. While he saw an uptick in offensive production last year, the hallmarks of his game will always be solid defense and a heavy, aggressive checking game. The Wolf Pack hope that he can offer peace of mind to both their goalkeepers and young, offensive prospects this season.
- One player who surprising will not suit up for Hartford this season is NHL veteran Connor Brickley. Brickley, who started 14 games for the New York Rangers down the stretch last season, was hoping to stay with the organization. He took a tryout offer with the Wolf Pack, but the team revealed today that he has been released from camp. A reliable two-way option, Brickely has played in 81 NHL games over his five-year pro career and has recorded 21 points. That would seemingly imply that, if handed a full-time role, Brickley could have 20+ point upside. Yet, he remains unemployed even at the AHL level, at least for the time being.
- One player still on an AHL tryout – and could be for a while longer – is Lance Bouma. The experienced NHL forward initially joined the Los Angeles Kings on a PTO in camp, but was reassigned to AHL camp with the Ontario Reign. Fox Sports’ Jon Rosen reports that Bouma is expected to stay in Ontario on a tryout basis for potentially the maximum 25-game stretch. Bouma is still not fully recovered from a major injury that cost him his season in Europe last year, but he seems willing to keep working in hopes of landing a deal with either the Reign or perhaps even the Kings. Bouma is a proven two-way contributor who could be a leader for Ontario in all three zones and in the locker room this season.