Tracking the Storm

Canes to Recall Boychuk

Friday, 12.17.2010 / 1:05 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Canes to Recall Boychuk
With Jiri Tlusty suffering an upper-body injury in Thursday night’s shootout win over Atlanta, Zach Boychuk will get his first big-league opportunity of the season.

Paul Branecky
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Hurricanes General Manager Jim Rutherford said that the 21-year-old Boychuk would be recalled from the American Hockey League’s Charlotte Checkers Friday evening. The Canes’ first-round pick in 2008 ranks tied for second in league scoring with 32 points (10g, 22a) in 28 games.

“He didn’t have as good of a training camp as he would have liked, but he did what all good players do in development leagues – he worked hard,” said Rutherford. “He’s earned the opportunity.”

Saturday’s home contest against Anaheim will mark Boychuk’s first NHL game of the season. Beginning with a two-game stint in his draft year, he’s played 33 total games with the Hurricanes, scoring 3 goals with 6 assists.

Rutherford said that he expected Boychuk to play in Tlusty’s spot on the left wing of either the third or fourth line. Tlusty had started the Atlanta game on the third unit with Patrick Dwyer and Chad LaRose, but that spot was filled by Sergei Samsonov after the injury.

The injury to Tlusty, which expected to sideline the 22-year-old Czech for “a week or two,” comes at an inopportune time. Rutherford believed that Tlusty, who had 2 goals in his last four games entering Thursday night, was just starting to round into form after a difficult start caused in part by offseason knee surgery.

“He’s a very smart player who is going to get better and better when he gets past these injuries,” said Rutherford. “The key for him is to get to the tough areas of the ice in front of the net to score goals.”

Tlusty was hurt in the first period when he was charged by the Thrashers’ Ben Eager while kneeling on the ice along the boards. Rutherford called the play “kind of a cheap shot” and said he initially feared for a worse prognosis.

“It’s not as bad as we expected,” he said.

Rutherford said that the key for Boychuk, however long this NHL stint will last, will be to keep displaying the consistency he’s showed since starting the season in Charlotte.

“He’s a guy that should be able to play in the top six (in the NHL),” said Rutherford. “He just has to get to the pace at this level and get through the grind of 82 games.”

The GM added that there were other players in Charlotte to consider for the spot, but Boychuk earned the nod due to the big numbers and strong work ethic he's displayed all season.


SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 77 23 31 -13 54
J. Faulk 82 15 34 -19 49
E. Lindholm 81 17 22 -23 39
V. Rask 80 11 22 -14 33
J. Skinner 77 18 13 -24 31
N. Gerbe 78 10 18 -14 28
R. Nash 68 8 17 -10 25
J. Staal 46 6 18 -6 24
J. Liles 57 2 20 -9 22
J. McClement 82 7 14 -7 21
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 22 24 5 .910 2.40
A. Khudobin 8 17 6 .900 2.72