- On Monday, the Quebec Tigres activated D Ward Jones from the disabled list. Jones had missed more than a month with an upper-body that he suffered before the All-Star break. To make room for Jones on the active roster, the Tigres reassigned D Serge Rimbaud to their farm team in Maine. The 18-year-old Rimbaud appeared in 13 games with Quebec, recording 8 assists and a +1 rating.
- Also on Monday, the Hamilton Pistols placed goaltender Lasse Koskinen on the disabled list. Koskinen suffered an upper-body injury during Sunday’s 7-4 win over New York. He is expected to miss 2 to 3 weeks, a serious blow for a Pistols team that is trying to snatch a playoff spot in the East. To replace Koskinen, the Pistols called up Hector Orinoco from their affiliate in Oshawa. The 23-year-old Orinoco has gone 13-11-0 with a 2.69 GAA and a .902 save percentage with Oshawa this season.
- On Tuesday, the Tigres placed LW Stellan Fisker on the disabled list. Fisker suffered an upper-body injury during the Tigres’ 3-0 win over Hershey. He is expected to miss 3 to 4 weeks. To replace Fisker on the roster, the Tigres called up LW Carl Bleyer from their farm team in Maine. Bleyer has put up 26 points (8 goals, 18 assists) with the Moose on the year.
- Wednesday was the trading deadline. The following trades were consummated at the deadline:
- The New York Night traded RW Mickey Simpson, D Andy Ruger, and a 3rd-round draft pick to the Washington Galaxy for RW Nori Takoyaki. (More details here.) After making the trade, the Night promoted D Craig Werner from their farm team in Utah and signed D Sheldon Harville to a minor-league contract.
- The Galaxy traded Ruger to the Kansas City Smoke in exchange for a 3rd-round pick.
- The Michigan Gray Wolves traded RW Cleo Rodgers, G Gus Parrish, and a 2nd-round pick to the Smoke in exchange for LW Kevin Starkey and D Scott Hexton. (More details here.) After the trade, Kansas City called up Parrish and LW Veikko Sikanen from their CHL affiliate in Omaha, and demoted G Jim Fleetwood to Omaha. They also released G Toby Kemper. Meanwhile, Michigan released D Igor Shovshenkov, demoted F Yann Eberlein to their affiliate in Cleveland, and signed Kemper to a minor-league deal.
- The Saskatchewan Shockers traded C Tanner Brooks to the Dakota Jackalopes in exchange for D Rusty Anderson. (More details here.) After the trade, the Shockers demoted D Valeri Nistrumov to their farm team in Virginia. They also released D Knute Skoeglin and signed F Marvin Cascio to a minor-league deal.
- The Hamilton Pistols traded C Pat Collistone, D Buster Kratz, and a 1st-round pick to the Galaxy in exchange for C Eddie Costello. (More details here.) After the trade, the Pistols called up D Russ Klemmer from their CHL affiliate in Oshawa, and demoted RW Michael Jennings to Oshawa. They also signed D Gresham Sourwine to a minor-league contract. The Galaxy demoted Kratz to their affiliate in Baltimore and promoted C Tucker Barnhill from Baltimore. They also released D Sheldon Harville.
- The Quebec Tigres traded D Kirby Hanlon, C Jacob Cunniff, and a 1st-round pick to the Jackalopes in exchange for D Matt Cherner. (More details here.) After the trade, Dakota released RW Omar Zdurchek; Quebec then signed him to a minor-league deal.
- Finally, the Seattle Sailors traded D Serkan Mratic to the Galaxy for D Stan Gallagher. (More details here.)
- On Saturday, the Jackalopes activated D Rodney Black from the injured list. Black, who was sidelined in only his second SHL game, missed two and a half weeks with an upper-body injury. Since Dakota was one player short of the roster limit, they did not make a corresponding move.
- Also on Saturday, the Hershey Bliss placed LW Lance Sweet on long-term injured reserve. Sweet was carried off the ice on a stretcher after being crunched into the boards late in the second period during Saturday’s 6-3 win over Saskatchewan. Sweet underwent surgery on his right leg, and is expected to be out for the rest of the season. To fill Sweet’s roster spot, Hershey called up D Seth Dowd from their CHL affiliate in Milwaukee. The 33-year-old Dowd, who last played in the SHL in 2016, recorded 27 points with Milwaukee this season.
With the SHL trade deadline approaching on Wednesday, the New York Night made the first move. With the team’s grip on a playoff spot slipping and with a crucial injury on the right wing, the Night picked up RW Nori Takoyaki from the Washington Galaxy in exchange for RW Mickey Simpson, D Andy Ruger, and a 3rd-round draft pick.
“Being hard up against the cap, there was only so much we could do,” said Night GM Royce McCormick. “But we saw a need, and we were able to fill it fairly cheaply.”
Takoyaki, who is the SHL’s only player of Japanese ancestry, had played with the Galaxy since the SHL’s beginning. He continued to produce solid numbers (6 goals, 15 assists) even in the midst of a disappointing season in the nation’s capital. He has a reputation as a weak defender, but he’ll fit right in with the Night’s shoot-first philosophy. With New York, Takoyaki will plug immediately into the open right-wing slot on the second line, which became vacant when Ivan “Trainwreck” Trujwirnek went down with a lower-body injury at the end of last week.
“Obviously, we all want Trainwreck to get healthy and get back in the lineup as soon as possible,” said Night coach Nick Foster. “But with Tako here, he should help us keep humming and keep the wins rolling in.”
When Trujwirnek returns, Takoyaki is expected to slot in on the third line, where Sylvester Catarino has struggled this season. “The deeper we are, the better we are,” said Foster.
The 22-year-old Simpson is the prize of the deal for Washington. Simpson has shuttled back and forth between the Night and their farm team in Utah this season. In 10 games with New York, Simpson recorded 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists) and a -5 rating.
“Right now, we’re a team in transition,” said Galaxy GM Ace Adams. “We’re focused on picking up prospects and giving our young guys some opportunities to shine. We’ll miss Tako and everything he did for our team. But I can’t wait to see what Mickey can do for us.”
The 30-year-old Ruger was a solid defender for the Night (he put up 4 points and a +2 rating in 11 games this season), but he was included solely to help the deal fit under the salary cap for the Night. The Galaxy also retained $500,000 of Takoyaki’s salary for this reason.
Immediately after the deal was completed, Washington turned around and dealt Ruger to the perpetually defense-starved Kansas City Smoke in exchange for future considerations.
- On Saturday, the Hershey Bliss placed D Steve Cargill on the disabled list. Cargill, who has had a sensational rookie season and played his way onto Hershey’s top pairing, was crunched hard into the boards during the third period of Saturday’s 6-4 win over Boston, and did not return. He was diagnosed with an upper-body injury that is expected to keep him out for 3 to 4 weeks. To replace Cargill on the roster, the Bliss promoted LW Gabriel Swindonburg from their CHL affiliate in Milwaukee. The 20-year-old Swindonburg, who was Hershey’s first-round draft pick this season, has scored 22 goals (tied ofr the CHL lead) with Milwaukee, and earned a trip to the CHL All-Star Game.
- Also on Saturday, the New York Night placed RW Ivan “Trainwreck” Trujwirnek on the disabled list. Trujwirnek suffered a lower-body injury while blocking a shot during the Night’s 7-4 loss against Hamilton. Trujwirnek’s situation is described as “week-to-week.” With Trujwirnek on the shelf, New York recalled RW Mickey Simpson from their farm team in Utah, Its the second stint in New York for Simpson, who was called up during LW Lee Fleming‘s injury back in late January.
- On Saturday, the Hamilton Pistols terminated the contract of LW Diego Garcia. The 26-year-old winger had been playing with Hamilton’s CHL team in Oshawa. After being bench due to a disagreement with Oshawa coach Harvey Williams, Garcia left the team. The Pistols deemed him in breach of contract. More on the story here.
- On Sunday, the New York Night activated LW Lee Fleming from the disabled list. Fleming missed nearly a month with a lower-body injury sustained after blocking a shot. To make room for Fleming on the roster, the Night returned RW Mickey Simpson back to their minor-league affiliate in Utah. Simpson, who had been called up when Fleming was injured, recorded 3 assists and a -5 rating in 9 games up with the big club.
- On Monday, the Night released F Bobby “Wacko” Warner and signed F Harper Hawking for the remainder of the season. The Night signed Hawking to a short-term contract to replace Simpson with their Utah farm club. The 20-year-old Hawking played in 9 games for Utah, notching 3 assists and a +2 rating. He played well enough to earn the respect of the coaching staff, who opted to keep him around after Simpson returned. Warner, who had been with Utah since the 2017 season, had 2 assists and a -1 rating in 13 games this season.
- On Wednesday, the Michigan Gray Wolves activated C Hunter Bailes from the disabled list. Bailes, who is Michigan’s leading goal scorer despite playing in only 19 of their 32 games, was out for two and a half weeks with a lower-body injury. In a corresponding room to make roster space for Bailes’ return, the Wolves reassigned C Phoenix Cage to their affiliate in Cleveland. Cage has spent time with Michigan in each of the last three seasons, and recorded three points (2 goals, 1 assist) during this most recent stint.