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Blackhawks’ Jan Rutta clears waivers, assigned to AHL

The defenseman has two goals and four assists in 23 games this season with Chicago.

Toronto Maple Leafs v Chicago Blackhawks Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Blackhawks assigned defenseman Jan Rutta to the AHL after he passed through waivers, the team announced Friday.

Rutta has two goals and four assists in 23 contests during his second campaign with Chicago.

The 28-year-old was a healthy scratch Wednesday night against Pittsburgh as Carl Dahlstrom was called up from the AHL. Dahlstrom, 23, had an assist, three shots and a plus-2 rating and logged 22:24 of ice time across 30 shifts in his season debut.

With Rutta in the AHL, the Blackhawks’ active defensemen include Dahlstrom, Erik Gustafsson, Henri Jokiharju, Duncan Keith, Brandon Manning and Connor Murphy. Both Brandon Davidson (knee) and Gustav Forsling (shoulder) are on injured reserve.

By waiving Rutta, Chicago has the flexibility to activate Forsling. The 22-year-old has a goal and four assists in 11 games this season since returning from right wrist surgery in July. He last played Dec. 5 at Anaheim.

Rutta joined the Blackhawks as a free agent out of the Czech Republic prior to the 2017-18 season. The right-handed blue liner, who missed some playing time with a groin injury last season, posted six goals and 14 assists in 57 games during his first season in North America. He re-signed with Chicago on a one-year deal worth $2.25 million in March.