Blackhawks place Tanner Kero on waivers

The forward has been a healthy scratch the last 10 games.

The Chicago Blackhawks placed forward Tanner Kero on waivers Thursday, reports The Athletic’s Scott Powers and Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

Kero found himself the odd man out in the Hawks’ forward mix after seeing some time earlier in the season. He’s been a healthy scratch for the past 10 games along with Michal Kempny and Jordan Oesterle, and now he’s free for the rest of the league to claim him during the next 24 hours.

If Kero clears waivers, he’ll likely be reassigned to the AHL. The move frees up a roster spot for the Hawks to potentially recall a player from the Rockford IceHogs.

Tanner Kero squeezed off Blackhawks’ roster by depth, asset management

Kero has recorded eight goals and 14 assists in 72 career NHL games for the Hawks. He signed a two-year contract extension worth $750,000 annually in March, but quickly lost his spot on the fourth line this season to veteran addition Tommy Wingels.

Now Kero is being shipped off the roster, which seems like a precursor to making another move.

Chicago has not recalled any players from the IceHogs this season. Vinnie Hinostroza, 23, looks like a prime candidate to be recalled at forward. The 2012 sixth-rounder leads Rockford in points and assists with 22 and 13, respectively. His nine goals rank second on the team to Matthew Highmore’s 10. Hinostroza has NHL experience with 14 points (six goals, eight assists) in 56 career games.

Chicago fell 6-2 to Washington on Wednesday for its fifth consecutive loss. The Hawks have Thursday off before beginning a three-game homestand Friday against the NHL’s three worst teams in Buffalo, Arizona and Florida.