The San Jose Sharks recalled defensemen Nick Cicek and Nikolai Knyzhov from the AHL’s San Jose Barracuda on Sunday, per a team tweet.
As The Athletic’s Corey Masisak notes, the recalls give San Jose some extra defensemen on the roster as they embark on a three-game road swing. Defenseman Radim Simek also left yesterday’s 8-3 loss to Washington, and his status is still unknown.
For Knyzhov, it’s a chance to get into his first NHL games since his breakout campaign in 2020-21. After just three previous games of NHL experience, Knyzhov appeared in all 56 games during the COVID-shortened campaign, scoring 10 points and mostly played alongside Erik Karlsson.
He’s played just 12 games of hockey since then, all coming this year with the Barracuda. A groin injury cost him the entire 2021-22 campaign, and an offseason Achilles injury kept him out through the end of January 2023. He hadn’t recorded a point with the Barracuda, but the defensive-minded Knyzhov will still get a chance to show that he can still play a role in the NHL.
Cicek, 22, has four assists in 16 games with the Sharks this season. Signed this past offseason after an impressive performance on an AHL deal last year, Cicek has slid up to the seventh or eighth spot on the organization’s defense depth chart.