Though the Carolina Hurricanes still have two games remaining in their season, they’re sending help earlier than expected.
On Wednesday, the NHL club sent forward Drayson Bowman, who has been with the team since Feb. 14, back to Charlotte. The Checkers had been expecting Bowman to return after the Canes’ final game on April 7, but the return of Andreas Nodl from injury sped that process.
Bowman, who has 11 goals in 35 AHL games this season, gives the Checkers another weapon up front as they attempt to generate offense on a more consistent basis and improve their playoff positioning. The third-year pro has enjoyed his most successful NHL season to date, having posted career highs in games played (37), goals (six), assists (seven) and points (13).
With Bowman back in the fold, the Checkers now have every player on their Clear Day list back at their disposal. However, injuries have become an issue, with forwards Nicolas Blanchard, A.J. Jenks and Justin Soryal and defensemen Rasmus Rissanen and Bobby Sanguinetti all suffering from various ailments. Other than Soryal, who is out for the season, all are considered day-to-day.
Bowman is expected to be available for Thursday’s home game against Milwaukee. His return will likely push amateur tryout Brody Sutter, who made his professional debut on Tuesday, out of the lineup.
Should injuries prevent both Rissanen and Sanguinetti from playing Thursday, the Checkers would need to bring in help on defense via a recall from ECHL Florida or a tryout signing.