Since being recalled by the Capitals after an injury to fellow forward Andre Burakovsky, forward Chandler Stephenson has played impressively, and it appears his hard work ethic and productive start to the season (with the Caps) has earned him a permanent spot on the Capitals for the foreseeable future.
Stephenson has played in nine games, scoring two goals (including his first NHL goal) and adding three assists for five points, with a plus-6 rating.
With Stephenson likely to play in his tenth game with the Capitals this season against the Nashville Predators tomorrow night, it means that should the Caps want to return him to the American Hockey League’s Hershey Bears, he would need to pass through waivers, per the Washington Post’s Isabelle Khurshudyan. Per Khurshudyan, it is unlikely Stephenson will be re-assigned anytime soon.
Chandler Stephenson played his ninth game of the season last night. Expect he’ll play his 10th against Nashville tomorrow night, which means he’d need waivers if Caps wanted to return him to Hershey. Sort of doubt he goes anywhere now.
— Isabelle Khurshudyan (@ikhurshudyan) November 13, 2017
Since being recalled, Stephenson has impressed in more than just basic statistics. Through nine games, he is averaging more than half a point (0.56) per game and the Capitals have started play in the offensive zone 53.4 percent of the time he is on the ice. Defensively, he has been outstanding, with four blocked shots in the aforementioned nine games. In addition, Capitals’ goaltenders have an astounding .967 save percentage when Stephenson is on the ice. Should Stephenson stay with the Capitals the rest of the season, he is on pace for 16 goals, 24 assists, and 40 points, which would be a welcome contribution for a Capitals team that lost significant firepower this past summer.
By Michael Fleetwood