Jan. 22: GM Patrik Allvin announced the team has reversed this transaction today, recalling Friedman from his conditioning loan and Karlsson from his regular loan. Karlsson has been papered up and down once already in the span of the last week, coming up to serve as a healthy scratch for Saturday’s win over the Maple Leafs. He’s been a frequent scratch for the Canucks this month but was returned to Abbotsford yesterday so he could play in their game against San Diego. Friedman was spectacular in his minor-league stint, posting four points and a +5 rating in four games with the Baby Canucks.
Jan. 16: The Vancouver Canucks have assigned defenseman Mark Friedman and Linus Karlsson to their AHL affiliate, the Abbotsford Canucks, with Friedman’s demotion coming by way of a conditioning loan. Without a corresponding roster move, the Canucks will now be down to 12 forwards and seven defensemen on the team’s active roster.
Friedman was originally brought over to Vancouver by way of a trade with the Pittsburgh Penguins on October 17th to serve as extra depth for the team’s defensive core. Now, he will spend a max of 14 days in the AHL, unless the team desires to bring him up earlier.
In his 18-game stint with the Canucks, Friedman had very little usage rages, scoring one assist while averaging just under 12 and a half minutes of ice time per night. Since November 30th, although he has been on the active roster, Friedman has served as a healthy scratch as Vancouver’s blue line has regained much of its health.
It will mark Friedman’s first time back in the AHL since his time with the Penguins earlier this season when he was able to suit up in two games for their AHL affiliate, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Throughout his career, Friedman is a veteran of 214 games in the AHL, scoring 11 goals and 67 points since his debut in the 2016-17 season.
For Karlsson, it will now mark his third reassignment to the AHL this year, suiting up for Vancouver in early January and early December, after making his NHL debut on November 16th. Only managed four games in total for the Canucks this season, Karlsson is still scoreless at the NHL level.
In contrast, Karlsson has been one of the best players in Abbotsford this season, scoring seven goals and 23 points in 25 games, sitting third on the team in scoring. Now, with both Friedman and Karlsson back in the AHL, they will help an Abbotsford team on the cusp of earning a playoff spot in the Pacific Division, as they hold a 19-11-2-1 record entering play tonight.