The Blackhawks re-assigned rookie defenseman Henri Jokiharju to the AHL on Saturday morning after his one-game emergency call up.
Chicago brought up Jokiharju on an emergency basis as fellow defenseman Carl Dahlstrom was out with flu-like symptoms. Jokiharju — in his first NHL game in exactly a month — only skated 9:14 minutes of ice time Friday in the Blackhawks’ 5-3 loss to the Avalanche at the United Center.
Jokiharju has no goals and 12 assists in 38 NHL games this season. Prior to his call up, Jokiharju registered a goal and eight assists in nine AHL games with the Rockford IceHogs. The 19-year-old has logged top-line minutes for Rockford and is seeing playing time on the power play, which he wouldn’t see with the Blackhawks.
Jeremy Colliton on why Henri Jokiharju belongs in Rockford:— John Dietz (@johndietzdh) February 23, 2019
“We feel he's where he should be, in Rockford. We're happy with his progression and how he's handling it. He's playing 21, 22 minutes every night and we're seeing a growth in his game, so that's a positive on that."
The IceHogs begin a two-game road trip out East on Saturday, when they visit the Hershey Bears (Capitals). Rockford is currently in a Calder Cup playoff spot in fourth place in the Central Division with 60 points, which is only five points clear of the last-place Manitoba Moose.