Penguins Claim Forward Zach Boychuk off Waivers
Thursday, 01.31.2013 / 12:42 PM / NewsPittsburgh Penguins
The Pittsburgh Penguins have claimed forward Zach Boychuk off of waivers from the Carolina Hurricanes, it was announced by executive vice president and general manager Ray Shero.
A native of Airdrie, Alberta, Boychuk played four seasons of junior hockey with the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the Western Hockey League (WHL) between 2005-09. Boychuk represented Team Canada in back-to-back World Junior Championships in 2008 and '09, earning a gold medal both years. He served as an alternate captain for Canada in '09.
Boychuk, 23, has spent the majority of this season with the Charlotte Checkers of the American Hockey League (AHL) – the top minor-league affiliate of the Hurricanes. Boychuk was leading the Checkers in scoring with 32 points (16G-16A) in 37 games played. He also appeared in one NHL game this season with Carolina.
Originally drafted by the Hurricanes in the first round (14th overall) of the 2008 NHL Draft, Boychuk has played parts of the past five seasons with the Hurricanes, tallying 18 points (7G-11A) in 73 career regular-season games. His best season at the NHL level came in 2009-10, when he notched nine points (3G-6A) in 31 games. The 5-foot-10, 185-pound Boychuk has spent most of the previous four seasons playing in the AHL for Charlotte and the Albany Rivers Rats. Boychuk's best AHL season was '10-11, when he established career highs offensively with 22 goals, 43 assists and 65 points in 60 games.
To play on Geno's line. Obviously, he's been a disappointment for the Canes so far at the NHL level, but in 64 games last season in the AHL, he had 21 goals and 23 assists. Had 22 G and 43 A in 60 games with Charlotte in the previous season. Not too bad, but it is the AHL. He was leading the Checkers in scoring with 32 points (16G-16A) in 37 games played so far this season. Who knows? Maybe a change of scenery is what he needs.
And to quote the Bibster: "HE'S A WESTENER!!!!"
That makes 8 first rounders on the roster:
Sid, Geno, MAF, Despres, Nisky, Sutter, Opik, Boychuk