The Washington Capitals have recalled defenseman Karl Alzner from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.
Alzner, 21, is a second-year pro who stands 6’3”, 206 pounds. The Burnaby, British Columbia, native has played 19 games for Hershey this season and has one goal, three assists and only four penalty minutes. His +14 rating is tied for the AHL lead with teammates John Carlson and Alexandre Giroux.
Alzner played in 30 games with Washington last season, recording one goal, four assists and only two penalty minutes. He was the only NHL defenseman with more than 25 games played who had fewer than eight penalty minutes. He played in 48 games for Hershey last season and had four goals, 16 assists and 10 penalty minutes. Alzner shared the lead among AHL rookies with a +23 rating, and he had two assists in 10 playoff games as Hershey won the Calder Cup.
The Capitals selected Alzner in the first round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft with the fifth overall pick. Alzner, who is No. 27 with Washington, is eligible to make his season debut tonight at Verizon Center when the Caps host Buffalo.
(COMMENT: Alzner, who played extremely well while defenseman Tom Poti was out with injury last November/December, will definitely help a defense that struggled big time in the Leafs game on Saturday and the third period of Monday night’s OT loss to Ottawa. The biggest reason #27 has not been up this year is because of his salary cap figure (~$1.6M).)