Dec 7: So much for that. Reichel has been returned to the AHL.
Dec 6: A top prospect is on his way up to the NHL. According to the AHL’s transactions log, the Chicago Blackhawks recalled forward Lukas Reichel from the AHL’s Rockford IceHogs today. In a corresponding transaction, they also placed goalie Petr Mrazek on injured reserve retroactive to December 3, per NBC Sports Chicago’s Charlie Roumeliotis.
The move comes as Jonathan Toews is set to miss tonight’s game with a non-COVID illness, so it’s feasible that Reichel doesn’t stay up long-term. However, the team’s 17th overall pick in 2020 again dominates the minors and could force the team’s hand.
For the second consecutive season, Reichel is operating at more than a point-per-game pace in the AHL and sits second on Rockford, scoring 10 goals and 23 points in 19 games. With depth players like Jujhar Khaira and Colin Blackwell struggling to produce, Reichel might have the opportunity to get in a meaningful string of NHL action if he performs well tonight.
Mrazek is dealing with his second groin injury of the season, an issue that plagued him last season with the Toronto Maple Leafs as well. Those injuries have limited the team’s presumptive starter to just nine games this year, and his .884 save percentage and 4.06 goals-against average are the worst among the team’s top three goalies. He can return as soon as this weekend.