Following the Utica Comets 6-1 loss to the Syracuse Crunch, head coach Trent Cull confirmed that he kept Michael Chaput and Thatcher Demko from his lineup because both had been recalled by the Comets parent club, the Canucks.
Trent Cull confirms Thatcher Demko and Michael Chaput have been recalled.
— Ben Birnell (@OD_Birnell) December 7, 2017
Both players were late scratches for the Comets, leading many to rightly guess that roster moves were on the horizon. With the way the Comets have underperformed thus far, they can’t be sitting players of this quality without a good excuse. Just take tonight’s results, for example.
For Chaput, this is his second tour with the Canucks this season. The Canucks first called on the journeyman centre in mid-October as a response to the Loui Eriksson knee injury that sidelined him for about a month. Chaput didn’t play for the Canucks in that stint, which lasted until October 27th.
It’s entirely possible Chaput suits up for the Canucks this time around. Canucks centre Bo Horvat left halfway through the third period in Tuesday’s 3-0 win over the Carolina Hurricanes. Today, Horvat went in for an MRI, raising concerns of a long-term injury. If Horvat can’t go for the Canucks tomorrow against the Philadelphia Flyers, Chaput is just one more injury away from his season debut in Vancouver — depending on how close Brandon Sutter is to a full recovery.
Andy Zilch just mentioned that Demko and Chaput were late scratches – Dorsett is not currently on LTIR, so it maybe another recall for Demko to get as close to the cap ceiling as possible to maximize the LTIR space created#Canucks
— Ryan Biech (@ryanbiech) December 7, 2017
As for Thatcher Demko, this is his third tour in Vancouver. And again, it’s likely for salary cap reasons. By calling Demko up, it allows the Canucks to maximize their salary cap gains by placing Derek Dorsett on long-term injured reserve.
It’s doubtful Demko will see any game action, but he gets to practice with the team and cash a couple of NHL-sized cheques, and surely that counts for something.