Since our last player-by-player update of former Waterloo Black Hawks skating in the world’s greatest hockey league, Cal Petersen appeared in his first 2019/20 NHL game, several alumni started to stack up points regularly, and a couple of former Hawks are dealing with injuries.
This season’s census of alumni who have been on the ice for at least one NHL game is now up to nine after reaching an all-time high of 14 in 2018/19.
Joe Pavelski – Dallas Stars
(Waterloo: 2002/03 – 03/04)
The first week or so during February was Pavelski’s most productive stretch so far during his brief time in Dallas. He established a five-game point streak from February 1st through the 8th, including the game-winning goal against the New Jersey Devils in the first of those contests. All totaled, the streak’s four goals and two assists pushed his season point total to 25. Unfortunately, Pavelski was scratched from Wednesday’s win against the Carolina Hurricanes due to an upper body injury.
Craig Smith – Nashville Predators
(Waterloo: 2006/07 – 08/09)
Power play opportunities have helped Smith increase his scoring since the beginning of last month. The veteran has three power play goals this year, all since January 5th. That includes a special teams score on Monday versus the Vancouver Canucks. That game featured one of Smith’s biggest ice time totals of the season: 16:43, his third-highest figure of the season. Dressing for all 55 Nashville games this winter, Smith has 13 goals and 11 assists. His +16 plus/minus figure is four short of the best during his NHL career.
Vinnie Hinostroza – Arizona Coyotes
(Waterloo: 2010/11 – 12/13)
The Arizona Coyotes are right in the middle of the Western Conference wild card race. If the season were to end today, Arizona would have the second wild card berth in the Western Conference. Hinostroza has appeared in all but one of Arizona’s 59 games. He has five goals and 15 assists and is on the cusp of a career milestone: with two more points, Hinostroza will have 100 at the NHL level. It will make him the fifth former Waterloo Black Hawk to reach that number.
Zach Sanford – St. Louis Blues
Sanford had the first multigoal game of his NHL career on February 4th versus the Carolina Hurricanes. He scored early in the second period, then again midway through the third, as the Blues cruised to a 6-3 home win. The Winnipeg Jets held Sanford without a point two nights later, ending a streak of six games with either a goal or an assist (he had four goals and five assists in that time). All 21 of Sanford’s points this season have been recorded at even strength.
Brandon Montour – Buffalo Sabres
(Waterloo: 2013/14 – 14/15)
Splitting his time last winter between two struggling clubs (the Anaheim Ducks and Buffalo Sabres), Montour was -20. This year in Buffalo, he is +8 in 42 appearances after being sidelined early by a lower body injury. Montour has three goals and ten assists this season. His most recent point was an assist on January 28th during a loss to the Ottawa Senators. That moved Montour past Mark Eaton for the most career NHL points by a former Waterloo defenseman.
Brock Boeser – Vancouver Canucks
Boeser is comfortably at the top of the chart when it comes to NHL scoring by former Black Hawks this season. He has 45 points (16 goals, 29 assists). Boeser is one assist shy of equaling the career-high 30 which he recorded last winter. He is 11 points from matching the 56 he notched in 2018/19. Due to an upper body injury, Boeser did not play on Monday versus Nashville Predators and will be out again tonight when the Canucks host the Chicago Blackhawks. His timeline to return to the lineup will be reevaluated later this week.
Cal Petersen – Los Angeles Kings
(Waterloo: 2011/12 – 2013/14)
Last week, the Kings traded goaltender Jack Campbell to the Toronto Maple Leafs. That opens the door for Petersen to spend the rest of this year in L.A. after making his second consecutive AHL All-Star appearance last month. Petersen was in the Kings’ crease Saturday and stopped 31 of 34 shots. However, without any production on the other end of the ice, the Kings fell, 3-0. L.A. is at home tonight against the Calgary Flames before playing an outdoor game Saturday versus the Colorado Avalanche, hosted by the United States Air Force Academy.
Patrick Russell – Edmonton Oilers
On February 1st, Russell put a career-high six shots on goal in an all-Alberta matchup against the Calgary Flames. It was his 34th game of the season, and he has appeared in two more contests since then after skating just six times for the Oilers last season. Russell has four assists.
Mark Friedman – Philadelphia Flyers
(Waterloo: 2012/13 – 13/14)
Friedman played in five games for the Flyers between January 8th and January 16th. He recorded his first NHL point – an assist – on January 13th versus the Boston Bruins. Friedman has returned to Philadelphia’s American Hockey League affiliate, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.
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