The Washington Capitals are set to face the winless San Jose Sharks at Capital One Arena on Sunday. Center prospect Hendrix Lapierre will make his appearance in the game, as confirmed by head coach Spencer Carbery.
Earlier today, the team announced the recall of Lapierre to fill the roster spot left by the injured Nic Dowd, who has been placed on injured reserve.
Lapierre will directly take Dowd’s position as the fourth-line center and will join Aliaksei Protas and Beck Malenstyn on the ice.
In his six games played this season, Lapierre has already recorded three assists for the Hershey Bears. He has been a crucial player for the AHL’s Atlantic Division leaders in various situations. Most notably, he has played alongside former junior teammate Pierrick Dube and talented Russian prospect Ivan Miroshnichenko.
When asked why Lapierre was the Capitals’ first choice for a forward call-up, Carbery explained, “All the reports we’ve received from Todd Nelson and Chris Patrick indicate that he’s having a strong start down there. He has shown great potential in multiple aspects of the game, including power play, penalty kill, and a well-rounded style. Therefore, we believe he deserves this opportunity and is the right candidate to be called up from Hershey.”
Building on an impressive rookie campaign during the 2022-23 season, Lapierre aims to continue his success. He played a vital role in Hershey’s playoff run, scoring the game-tying goal in Game Seven of the Finals, which ultimately led to their Calder Cup victory. The game-winning goal was scored by Mike Vecchione in overtime.
Having previously gained NHL experience with the Capitals, Lapierre unexpectedly secured a spot on the roster after the Training Camp preceding the 2021-22 season. In his six games played, he even managed to score his first NHL goal before being returned to his Canadian junior team.
🚨 FIRST NHL GOAL ALERT 🚨
Congratulations to Hendrix Lapierre (@Lapiz92) — first game, first goal! #NHLFaceOff
— NHL (@NHL) October 14, 2021
The Capitals currently have 13 forwards on their roster, which means Lapierre was not guaranteed a spot despite the recall. However, Sonny Milano is sidelined with an illness and will not be available to play against San Jose, opening the door for Lapierre’s return.
Lapierre’s upcoming appearance on Sunday will mark his first NHL game since November 6, 2021.
Headline photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB
Sarah Anderson dives into the fast-paced world of NHL hockey. Her coverage includes game analysis, player spotlights, and the latest news from the ice. Sarah’s dedication to the sport ensures that hockey enthusiasts stay informed about the NHL’s thrilling action.