The 29-year old forward has been a story of chip-chip chip away at it and it will start to come loose.
After two seasons in Ottawa Senators‘ farm system playing for Binghamton Senators, his sophomore campaign didn’t go quite as well on the score sheet as his rookie year did, but he turned a -7 into a tied for 2nd +21 rating.
It wasn’t enough to keep him around for the final year of his contract as he was traded in the off season to St. Louis for future considerations (bag of rocks).
Impressive in his first run with affiliate Chicago Wolves scoring 16 goals and 18 assists and he had a team leading +24 plus/minus.
That was good enough for the parent club to sign him up to a one-year extension and he became an assist captain for the minor league club. He set new personal highs for assists (33 – 1st), points (47 – 2nd) and his +11 was also good enough for 2nd on the squad.
It was in the postseason that he really started setting his current pace though, as he notched 6 assists in 5 Calder Cup Playoffs games.
Given another 1-year contract, he was named captain for 2015/2016 and is on pace to record new best marks in all categories.
In 41 games he has 16 goals, 21 assists with a +14 and he also looks to be shooting the puck on net with way more frequency at 87.
Although he has yet to earn an NHL recall and there are maybe younger prospects ahead of him, he has put in the effort to see what he can do up in the big league.