The Calgary Flames recalled Walker Duehr from the minor leagues this morning and to make room on the roster have moved Brett Ritchie to injured reserve. Ritchie suffered a lower-body injury on Tuesday during his fight with Nashville Predators defenseman Mark Borowiecki.
Injured reserve means at least a week out of the lineup for Ritchie and a chance for Duehr to make his NHL debut. The 23-year-old forward was an undrafted free agent signing earlier this year after four seasons at Minnesota State-Mankato and has just ten AHL contests under his belt. Five of those have come this season, where Duehr has scored two goals and three points while continuing to be a physical presence. If he ends up in the lineup, he will likely fill the same role as Ritchie, a right-shot forward for the fourth line.
With the Jack Eichel saga in the rearview, the Flames can focus on their opponent tonight and try to continue their early-season success. Calgary is sitting at 6-1-2 on the year, two points behind the Edmonton Oilers for the lead in the Pacific Division. While Ritchie hasn’t exactly been a huge part of that, averaging around ten minutes a night through his first month, he did give the team the kind of big, veteran, bang-and-crash forward that Darryl Sutter has loved in his bottom-six for years.