It looks like Jonathon Blum, the 1st-round draft pick of the Nashville Predators back in 2007, will finally get a chance to make his NHL debut after getting called up from the Milwaukee Admirals this morning. This, in the aftermath of Ryan Suter's injury Saturday night against Phoenix. Goaltender Mark Dekanich has also been called up, while Anders Lindback has been assigned to Milwaukee, in a move that is likely meant to get Lindback some game action. His last duty was 12:07 of work on February 7 vs. Edmonton, and he's only taken the ice 4 times since Christmas.
Blum has had a productive season for the Milwaukee Admirals, leading the team with 26 assists, and second on the team in points with 34 behind Linus Klasen.
Our man in Milwaukee, Ryan Miller, had this to say about Blum's work this year:
Blum has been a positive force on the power play, and adept at moving the puck in the offensive zone. Defensively, he uses positioning to make up for his lack of size. He is prone to poor decisions, especially when needing to choose between playing the body or playing the puck along the boards. We're surprised he got the call over Aaorn Johnson or Teemu Laakso, but on a team looking for some extra offense, he may be able to assist.
What's interesting here is that Blum is a right-handed shot, and usually Barry Trotz prefers to have lefties play on the left side, and righties on the right. With Suter on the shelf, however, the Preds will sport 4 right-handed shooting defensemen, so it will be interesting to see who gets moved over to the other side, and of course who gets to play alongside Shea Weber.
Follow after the jump for the team's press release...
Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has recalled defenseman Jonathon Blum from Milwaukee (AHL). This is Blum's first career recall, and he is the 18th Nashville draft pick to appear on the team's roster this season, surpassing the previous record of 17 set in 2009-10. His expected appearance in the lineup on Tuesday night will mean every Nashville first-round pick from 1998 (David Legwand) to 2007 will have played in the NHL. Blum was selected 23rd overall in the 2007 Entry Draft.
Blum, 22 (1/30/89), is tied for ninth among AHL defensemen, and tied for second on the Admirals in points with 34 (8g-26a). He scored Milwaukee's only goal in last night's game vs. Texas, his sixth power-play marker, good for third among League blueliners, and recently reeled off a nine-game point streak (1g-8a) from Jan. 15-Feb. 9, second longest by a defender behind only teammate and 2008 second-round pick of the Predators Roman Josi, who is currently riding a 13-game streak (5g-9a). Now in his second professional season, the former Canadian Hockey League Defenseman of the Year with the Vancouver Giants (WHL) was the first California-born and raised player to be selected in the first round of the NHL Entry Draft.
Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has assigned rookie goaltender Anders Lindback (AHN-dehrs LIND-bahck) to Milwaukee (AHL) and recalledgoaltender Mark Dekanich (MAHRK DEH-kuh-nihtch) from the Admirals.
Dekanich, 24 (5/10/86), will be making his fourth appearance on the Predators roster this season. He spent a week with the team from Oct. 10-17 and made his NHL debut on Dec. 18 vs. Los Angeles during his second recall, stopping 22-of-25 shots in 50 minutes of action. He spent 24 hours on the roster this past weekend, but did not dress for a game. A 2011 AHL All-Star, Dekanich is tied for third in the American League save percentage (.929), ranked fourth in goals-against average (2.04) and is tied for sixth in wins (20).
Lindback, 22 (5/3/88), has posted a 10-5-2 record, a .914 save percentage, a 2.58 goals-against average and a pair of shutouts for the Predators in 2010-11, his first season in North America. This is the Gavle, Sweden's first assignment to the Admirals.