Chicago Wolves Set Clear Day Roster

Photo Courtesy Chris Jerina.

Today is the day AHL teams submit their "Clear Day Rosters." What that means is that, as of today, the Chicago Wolves roster is frozen in effect, and they’ll be unable to add additional players barring an emergency injury or recall situation. Here’s what the AHL says about the by-law: 

Each Clear Day roster consists of a maximum of 22 players. According to AHL by-laws, only those players listed on a team’s Clear Day roster are eligible to compete in the remainder of the 2011-12 AHL regular season and in the 2012 Calder Cup Playoffs, unless emergency conditions arise as a result of recall, injury or suspension.

Teams may also add signed draft choices and players signed to amateur tryout contracts, provided that their respective junior or college seasons are complete.

The full Chicago Wolves clear day roster and some analysis after the jump.

Here are the 22 names listed by the Chicago Wolves on their clear day roster:

  • Matt Climie (G)
  • Eddie Lack (G)
  • Nolan Baumgartner
  • Byron Bitz
  • Kevin Connauton
  • Kevin Doell
  • Mike Duco
  • Dustin Friesen
  • Andrew Gordon
  • Darren Haydar
  • Jordan Henry
  • Mark Mancari
  • Mark Matheson
  • Tim Miller
  • Victor Oreskovich
  • Ryan Parent
  • Adam Polasek
  • Steve Reinprecht
  • Anton Rodin
  • Yann Sauve
  • Jordan Schroeder
  • Bill Sweatt

The first thing that should jump out to you is the absence of Chris Tanev’s name on the roster. While Tanev has found himself in the press-box of late (to our chagrin) – that the Canucks opted not to make him eligible for the Calder Cup playoffs speaks volumes about their plans for him. Chris Tanev is a Canuck, he’ll spend the balance of this season with the team and will remain with the big club for the duration of the postseason. Pretty exciting!

The presence of Steve Reinprecht on this list will raise eyebrows, as a month ago, Mike Gillis virtually assured Matt Sekeras and Blake Price that Reinprecht would join the Canucks for the postseason. While it’s possible, even likely, that the Canucks will call up Reinprecht on the very first day of the postseason, he needed to be placed on the roster freeze list just to be eligible to finish the AHL regular season, even if it’s only to stay "fresh." In other words Reinprecht’s presence on this list tells us nothing about the team’s plans for the veteran centre – and it’ll be curious to see if he plays a single AHL playoff game, or if he’ll end up joining the Canucks shortly after April 7th (the final day of the regular season).

While exceptions to the roster freeze are made, the fact that Darren Arhchibald was left off the postseason roster is disappointing. Archibald impressed at the young-star tournament in Penticton in September, and scored a goal in his first career AHL game before tailing off and being sent down to Kalamazoo of the ECHL. It looks like, barring injury, Archibald will remain in the East Coast league for the duration of this season at least.

The other really notable omission: big, athletic fourth liner Stefan Schneider – who has played well for the Wolves in 38 games this season, appearing exclusively in a checking role. While he isn’t on the "Clear Day Roster" I’d expect him to play in the postseason if and when Reinprecht is recalled.

The Canucks can add signed draft picks to the Wolves roster during the playoffs. Prospects who are in college can’t be signed without forgoing their eligibility, and of the team’s college prospects, only Joe Cannata is a senior. While he’s likely to be signed and added as a "black-ace" of sorts when his season at Merrimack is finished, I doubt he’ll see any game action in the Calder Cup Playoffs this spring.

Of the team’s Major Junior prospects, I’d expect both Nicklas Jensen and Frank Corrado (who are signed) to join the Wolves when their respective teams season’s end. Players like Alexandre Grenier and Alex Friesen could be added to the roster as well, although, it’s a long-shot since the team would need to sign those players first, and both players are on team’s with Memorial Cup ambitions.