The Canadiens have re-called Christian Thomas from the Hamilton Bulldogs and will join the team for practice Friday in Brossard.
The re-call was rumoured for much of the day after the Hamilton Bulldogs left Thomas behind to stand bye when the team departed for Abbotsford B.C. The Canadiens did not confirm the story until after 5.00pm Thursday. In the interim there were rumours that the Canadiens were in the process of completing a trade, possibly involving Rene Bourque and Thomas would be the lineup replacement. The rumour may hold up but, with the demotion of Louis Leblanc earlier in the week, the Canadiens had a roster spot open as they face back-to-back games this weekend.
The 5’9″ Thomas was acquired from the New York Rangers in an eye-brow raising trade for foreward Danny Kristo on July 2nd. An sports hernia injury suffered in training camp kept him out of the lineup the first fifteen games of the Hamilton season. In December he suffered an ankle/foot injury that took him out of the lineup for another five games. In 23 games, he has five goals and nine assists. Kristo, in 39 games with the Rangers Hartford Wolfpack AHL affiliate has 16 goals and 13 assists.
Thomas has played in one NHL game. He was called up by the Rangers last season and made his NHL debut against the Canadiens at the Bell Centre February 23rd last season. He played 12:46 and had two shots and three hits. Thomas was sent back to Hartford two days later. Coming out of junior hockey where his best season ws 54 goals and 99 points, Thomas was projected to be a top six forward. His size is his drawback.
From Canadiens Communications
MONTREAL, QUEBEC – Montreal Canadiens and Hamilton Bulldogs General Manager Marc Bergevin announced today the Canadiens have recalled forward Christian Thomas from the Bulldogs.
In 23 games with Hamilton this season, the 5’9”, 174-pound forward has recorded 14 points (five goals, nine assists) and 14 penalty minutes.
In 101 career American Hockey League regular season games with the Connecticut Whale and Hamilton Bulldogs, the 21-year-old has recorded 51 points (25 goals, 26 assists) and 29 penalty minutes. In one career National Hockey League game with the New York Rangers, the Toronto, Ontario native has recorded no points and no penalty minutes.
Thomas was originally selected by the Rangers in the second round (40th overall) in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.