With seven healthy defenseman finally on their roster, the Chicago Blackhawks announced that they have assigned defenseman Brandon Davidson to the Rockford IceHogs of the AHL, freeing up a roster spot for Gustav Forsling, who has been on injured reserve with an upper-body injury.
The 27-year-old Davidson has had trouble finding a full-time role with any team as he is already on his fourth organization in his fifth season in the league. Due to injuries and multiple healthy scratches, Davidson has appeared in just 10 games for Chicago this year. He has been traded twice, claimed on waivers once and this year opted to sign a one-year deal with a Chicago in the offseason worth $650K. He hasn’t played a game in the AHL since the 2014-15 season when he played for the Oklahoma City Barons, no longer an affiliate with the AHL.
For the Blackhawks, it’s just another move to rebuild their blueline that has gotten younger throughout the season, starting with Henri Jokiharju making the team out of camp, to the promotion of Carl Dahlstrom on Dec. 12, to the recent acquisition of Slater Koekkoek from Tampa Bay. The team has also moved out some veterans, including dealing Brandon Manning and his two-year deal to Edmonton in exchange for winger Drake Caggiula and veteran defenseman Jason Garrison, who the team immediately placed on unconditional waivers and released. The team then moved Jan Rutta to the Lightning to acquire Koekkoek.
These moves should only continue into next season as well as the Blackhawks have a number of young blueliners who could be ready for Chicago next year, including 2018 first-round picks Adam Boqvist and Nicolas Beaudin, as well as University of Denver standout Ian Mitchell (although the team would still have to sign him).