Capitals Recall Barber and Ness from Hershey


The Washington Capitals have recalled forward Riley Barber and defenseman Aaron Ness from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today. 

Aaron Ness was traveling to Hartford, when he received the news of recall and has quickly departed to join the Capitals. Riley Barber is en route from Hershey, as per Zach Fisch.

This is Riley Barber’s first recall. He will likely assume the 13th forward position on the roster. Aaron Ness’ callup is likely in response to the potential need for a replacement defender due to Matt Niskaene’s injury.

In related news, the Capitals have placed Andre Burakovksy on (Retroactive) Injured Reserve (Not Long Term Injured Reserve). The move does not provide salary cap relief, but does allow for the call-up of both Ness and Barber.

Barber, 23, has recorded 11 points (7g, 4a) in 18 games with the Bears this season. The 6’0”, 193-pound forward missed 35 games this season with an upper-body injury and has scored three goals in five games since returning to the lineup. Last season, Barber registered 55 points (26g, 29a) in 74 games with Hershey and ranked second among AHL rookies in goals and tied for fourth in points. In addition, he ranked second on the team in goals, points and shots (163) and ranked third in assists. The Pittsburgh native was named the Bears’ 2015-16 Rookie of the Year. He has earned 66 points (33g, 33a) in 92 career AHL games with Hershey. Barber played at Miami University (Ohio) for three seasons from 2012-15 and earned 123 points (54g, 69a) in 116 games. He was drafted by the Capitals in the sixth round, 167th overall, in the 2012 NHL Draft.

Ness, 26, registered two assists in eight games with the Capitals last season. The Roseau, Minn., native made his Washington debut on Jan. 2, 2016 at Columbus and earned his first Capitals point with an assist on Jan. 5, 2016 at Boston. Ness was drafted by the Islanders in the second round, 40th overall, in the 2008 NHL Draft and has recorded five points (1g, 4a) in 37 career NHL games with the NY Islanders and Washington.

Ness has registered 16 points (5g, 11a) in 41 games with Hershey (AHL) this season and ranks second among Bears defensemen in points and tied for second in goals and assists. Last season, Ness ranked second among Bears defensemen in points (27) and assists (21), tied for second in goals (6) and third in plus/minus (+12). The 5’10”, 184-pound defenseman has registered 166 points (34g, 132a) in 383 career AHL games with Bridgeport and Hershey.

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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