Chicago Blackhawks prospect forward Brandon Pirri may have an interesting few weeks ahead of him.
The 22-year-old center has been up and down between Chicago and AHL Rockford this season and just recently was named MVP of the AHL All-Star Game.
Despite his success in the minors and showing glimpses of his offensive capabilities with the Blackhawks, he could be traded before the March 5 deadline. As Scott Powers at ESPNChicago.com shares, Pirri isn’t sure what to make of the trade rumors that have popped up lately.
“I don’t know how to feel,” said Pirri. “It’s the first time I’ve been involved in something like this where there have been rumors flying around. But at the same time, I’m not worrying about it. Just come down and help this team win.
“It’s out of my control. It’s up to the management in Chicago to do what they feel is right. I’m just looking for that opportunity wherever it may be.”
Pirri’s hopes of getting back to Chicago may have been derailed after the team acquired center Peter Regin from the New York Islanders before the Olympic break. Adding another center to the mix with Jonathan Toews, Michal Handzus, and Marcus Kruger likely squeezes Pirri out.
Pirri was the leading scorer in the AHL last season, but the team believes his defensive skills need work.
Roughly three months after acquiring Dougie Hamilton, the Calgary Flames have brought his brother on board too.
Freddie Hamilton was pried away from the Colorado Avalanche for the cost a 2016 conditional seventh-round draft pick, per the Avalanche’s website. The Flames announced that he will report to AHL Stockton.
Freddie, who is the older of the two at 23, is a center that excelled offensively in the OHL and has chipped in at the AHL level. However, he has just one point in 29 contests with Colorado and the San Jose Sharks.
This is obviously not a big trade, but perhaps Freddie will eventually become a solid member of the Flames’ supporting cast. If nothing else, it didn’t cost Calgary much to reunite the brothers. The duo previously played together with the Niagara IceDogs.
With the start of the regular season just around the corner, it looks like Robby Fabbri will not only make his NHL debut on Thursday, but also get meaningful minutes.
During Sunday’s practice the 19-year-old forward played alongside Jori Lehtera and Jaden Schwartz. Nothing is set in stone, but that combination did gel.
“I think we want to look at what the combinations look like now rather than do it at the start of the season,” Blues coach Ken Hitchcock told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We’re looking at a hard match line and we’re also looking at taking advantage of speed and skill off the rush.
“I really liked what I saw today. I really liked Lehtera’s line, they looked very dynamic off the rush.”
The top line of Alexander Steen, Paul Stastny, and Vladimir Tarasenko seems like a good bet to play together for the time being. Jori Lehtera and Jaden Schwartz will stick together on the second line while Dmitrij Jaskin and David Backes can expect to be regular partners on the third unit. The X-factors will be Fabbri and Troy Brouwer as Hitchcock has left the door open to alternating between the two of them on the second and third line depending on the opponent.
Fabbri was taken with the 21st overall pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft and is looking to make the leap after a brief stint in the AHL last season. At the OHL level, he’s been a dominate force with the Guelph Storm, scoring 25 goals and 51 points in 30 games in 2014-15.