Washington recalled rookie defenseman Connor Carrick from the AHL’s Hershey Bears Wednesday afternoon ahead of a grueling stretch of six games in the next nine days beginning with back-to-back contests Thursday and Friday.

Carrick, 19, started the year with the Capitals, appearing in the first three games of the season before he was assigned to Hershey on Oct. 11. He then skated in 13 AHL games before suffering an upper-body injury that has kept him out of the Bears’ lineup since Nov. 23.  But Carrick, a 2012 fifth-round draft pick, regained his health in time to play for the United States in the World Junior Championships in Malmo, Sweden, recently.

In five games before the United States was eliminated from the two-week tournament, Carrick recorded three assists and had a plus-7 rating. He also had quite the adventure upon his return to North America with a host of travel delays and cancellations as he made his way back to Hershey. Tim Leone of The Patriot News has the full story of Carrick’s travels.

Back when Washington sent Carrick to the minors, Coach Adam Oates said “I expect to see him again” but the organization wanted to make sure he received plenty of playing time in his first professional season. With Carrick, a right handed shot, back in the mix it wouldn’t be surprising to see Steve Oleksy sit out to make room for the strong-skating young defenseman.