Phoenix has recalled Gilbert Brule from its AHL affiliate in Portland, the club announced on Tuesday.
Brule, 26, has performed well for the Pirates in limited time this season, scoring 12 points in 11 games while ranking first on the team in power-play goals, with four.
Columbus’ first-round pick (sixth overall) at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Brule played 33 regular-season games for the Coyotes in 2011-12, scoring five goals with nine assists; however, Phoenix did not tender him a qualifying offer after the season, making him an unrestricted free agent.
Brule then signed with Zurich last summer, but was released after just 14 games with the Swiss club.
The Coyotes brought him back this fall for a training camp tryout, but Brule was also linked to KHL Metallurg for a time as it seemed his playing future was up in the air.
A former star with WHL Vancouver, Brule has struggled with personal issues including a now-defunct relationship with his father, who he accused of taking money from him and even “making suggestions there were some pictures on my computer that could be shown” — allegations his father denies.