Blackhawks recall Tyler Motte, Erik Gustafsson, Kyle Baun as black aces for playoffs

There may not be much playoffs left to play, though.

The Chicago Blackhawks recalled forwards Tyler Motte and Kyle Baun and defenseman Erik Gustafsson from the AHL on Tuesday, the team announced. They’ll serve as black aces for the Hawks’ remaining playoff games, starting Thursday with Game 4 against the Nashville Predators.

The Rockford IceHogs ended their season over the weekend, which freed up Motte, Baun, and Gustafsson to become emergency options for the Blackhawks. Unfortunately, the odds are firmly against them playing with time running out in Chicago’s postseason.

The Hawks currently trail the Predators, 3-0, in the seven-game series. They lost Game 3 on Monday night in overtime after blowing a two-goal lead in the third period. Unless they can win four games in a row, which is an unlikely proposition, the season will end sooner than later.

Motte is the only one of the three call-ups who spent any time with the Blackhawks this season. He also had 10 goals and six assists in 43 AHL games. Baun finished second on the IceHogs with 34 points, while Gustafsson finished tied Ville Pokka for the league among Rockford defenseman with 30 points.