Ahead of a two-game road trip to Ottawa and Montreal, the Washington Capitals have recalled forward Liam O’Brien from their American Hockey League affiliate in Hershey, Pa. The move gives the team an extra forward for the road, bringing the roster back to 22 players.
O’Brien last played with the Capitals in the 2014-15 season, when he made the opening night roster. He scored a goal and an assist in 13 games with Washington after signing with the organization as a free agent in October 2014. O’Brien is having a career year offensively in Hershey with five goal and 13 assists, his 18 points through 28 games eclipsing the 16 points he scored in 59 games last season.
It’s unlikely O’Brien will crack the lineup against the Senators on Saturday night, as the Capitals are on a four-game win streak and the bottom-six forward corps has been playing especially well. Coach Barry Trotz also said on Thursday morning that Washington was finished with the process of experimenting with playing prospects ahead of veterans who don’t necessarily deserve to be out of the lineup, as that “made it uncomfortable for some guys.”
O’Brien is waiver-exempt and has a $621,667 cap hit, according to CapFriendly.com, which makes him a cheaper option compared to prospects like Jakub Vrana, Zach Sanford and Travis Boyd.