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Blackhawks recall Ville Pokka, reassign defenseman Viktor Svedberg to AHL; Michal Rozsival placed on LTIR

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The Finnish defenseman will start the season in the NHL.

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Blackhawks have recalled defenseman Ville Pokka and reassigned defenseman Viktor Svedberg to the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League, the team announced Tuesday.

In addition, they have placed Michal Rozsival on long-term injured reserve. The team now includes 13 forwards, eight defenseman and two goaltenders.

Svedberg, 24, re-signed with the Blackhawks in August on a one-year contract. Last season, the 24-year-old dealt with an early-season injury and was given the opportunity to produce with the IceHogs as the season progressed with Chicago trading defensive prospects Adam Clendening, T.J. Brennan and Klas Dahlbeck.

Svedberg had three goals and 11 assists in 49 regular-season AHL games. The 6-foot-8 defenseman also tallied four assists in eight postseason contests. He was recalled by the Hawks after the IceHogs lost in the second round of the Calder Cup playoffs, and practiced with the Hawks throughout their Stanley Cup playoff run.

Pokka, 21, who is on a two-way contract worth $925,000, replaces Svedberg. He logged eight goals and 22 assists in 68 regular-season games for the IceHogs. He added three assists in eight playoff contests.

Rozsival, 37, suffered a fractured left ankle in Chicago's second-round series victory over the Minnesota Wild during last season's Stanley Cup run. He resumed skating in September but was not ready to take the ice for Wednesday's season opener against the New York Rangers.

The veteran defenseman signed a one-year contract Sept. 19, worth $600,000 plus $200,000 in possible bonuses for an overall salary cap hit of $800,000. He was on a professional tryout for training camp along with two other veteran defenseman -- Jan Hejda and Lubomir Visnovsky -- but after one day the Hawks decided to bring him back into the fold.