Just a day after sending him down to the minors, the Ottawa Senators have called defenseman Thomas Chabot back up from AHL Belleville. The team is finding it hard to keep the promising blue liner in the AHL and for good reason. The 2015 first-round pick has looked better and better with each game played in the NHL, now with three points and a +2 rating through five 2017-18 contests. He also handled more ice time well in his most recent stint, including extensive action on the power play. In fact, Chabot’s 2:34 average power play time on ice is second only to Erik Karlsson among Ottawa defensemen. The Sens are running out of excuses to not keep their prized prospect in the big leagues, especially when he has shown superior play in the NHL versus the AHL and appears to have already outgrown the minors. There was no specific reason given by the team for this latest recall, but one would think that Chabot could be up for a longer stint this time around.
- Another fan base ready for an exciting addition back to their roster is the New Jersey Devils. Devils beat reporter Amanda Stein reported today that Marcus Johansson has been cleared to re-join the team and should be ready for New Jersey’s upcoming road trip. Johansson has not played since November 1st due to a concussion, but appears to back at full strength for a Devils team that has exceedingly outperformed expectations this season despite several medical absences. Johansson, of course, was New Jersey’s big off-season acquisition, coming over via trade from the Washington Capitals. However, Johansson has only seen ten games of action in 2017-18 and should be primed to add to his mere five points thus far when he takes the ice again this week.
- Fellow Swede and injured center Patrik Berglund appears poised for a return from injury soon as well. St. Louis Blues beat writer Lou Korac reports that the long-time Blue could be back as early as Wednesday from off-season shoulder surgery that has kept him off the ice so far this season. Yet, like fellow core teammate Jay Bouwmeester, the Blues have hardly felt his absence this year. The NHL’s best team has been rolling in 2017-18 without Berglund, Robby Fabbri, Zach Sanford, and until recently Bouwmeester. Yet, logic would dictate the team would only get better upon Berglund’s return and that should scare the other 30 teams in the NHL.