The Washington Capitals announced on Friday that they have returned Aliaksei Protas, Beck Malenstyn and Joe Snively to the Hershey Bears.
The Bears have two more games remaining in their regular season schedule – Friday against the Islanders in Bridgeport and Saturday at home against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.
The Bears have earned a bye in the first round of the AHL postseason and will be idle next week before they begin their run for a 12th Calder Cup.
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The Washington Capitals have loaned forwards Aliaksei Protas, Joe Snively and Beck Malenstyn to the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today.
Protas, 22, recorded 15 points (4g, 11a) in 58 games with Washington this season, setting single-season career highs in games played, goals, assists and points. The 6’6″, 235-pound forward appeared in 33 games with Washington during the 2021-22 season, ranking second among Capitals rookies in plus/minus (+4) and third in points (9). In 91 career NHL games with the Capitals, Protas has recorded 24 points (7g, 17a).
In eight games with Hershey this season, Protas has recorded five points (2g, 3a). The Vitebsk, Belarus native recorded 24 points (8g, 16a) in 42 games with the Bears in 2021-22, establishing AHL career highs in goals, assists, points and power play goals (2) and earning Hershey’s Rookie of the Year award. Protas has recorded 36 points (12g, 24a) in 66 career AHL games with Hershey.
The Capitals selected Protas with their third-round pick, 91st overall, in the 2019 NHL Draft.
Snively, 27, recorded four points (2g, 2a) in 12 games with Washington this season. The Herndon, Virginia, native became the first Virginia-born player to play for the Capitals in franchise history last season. In 12 games in 2021-22, Snively recorded seven points (4g, 3a), including a three-point effort (2g, 1a) on Feb. 10, 2022 against the Montreal Canadiens. Snively became one of 15 rookies in franchise history to record at least seven points in his first 10 games. In 24 career NHL games with the Capitals, Snively has recorded 11 points (6g, 5a) and a +6 plus/minus rating.
In 31 games with Hershey this season, Snively has recorded 25 points (9g, 16a). The 5’9″, 179-pound forward ranks third on the Bears in points per game (0.81) and tied for fifth in power-play goals (3). Snively recorded 38 points (15g, 23a) in 35 games with Hershey in 2021-22 and ranked third on the team in points and fourth in goals. During the 2020-21 season, Snively registered 17 points (6g, 11a) in 30 games for the Bears. In 150 career AHL games with Hershey, Snively has recorded 111 points (44g, 67a).
Snively trained at MedStar Capitals Iceplex during his youth and was a participant in Washington’s Little Caps program.
Malenstyn, 25, appeared in nine games with Washington this season, recording two points (1g, 1a) and 34 hits. The 6’3″, 206-pound forward scored one goal in 12 games with the Capitals during the 2021-22 season. Malenstyn recorded his first career NHL goal and point on Nov. 30, 2021, against the Florida Panthers. In 24 career NHL games with the Capitals, Malenstyn has recorded three points (2g, 1a).
The Delta, British Columbia native has recorded 10 points (7g, 3a) in 39 games with Hershey this season. Malenstyn’s 0.26 points-per-game is the second-highest rate of his career (2019-20: 0.33). In addition, Malenstyn ranks tied for first on the Bears in shorthanded goals (1).
Malenstyn recorded 16 points (10g, 6a) in 65 games with the Bears in 2021-22, establishing an AHL career high in goals and tying a career high in points. Malenstyn finished the season ranked tied for third on Hershey in game-winning goals (3) and sixth in games played. Malenstyn appeared in all three of Hershey’s playoff games, recording one goal. In 224 career AHL games with Hershey, Malenstyn recorded 57 points (31g, 26a).
The Capitals selected Malenstyn with their fifth-round pick, 145th overall, in the 2016 NHL Draft.
Man, Hershey is stacked. 12 Calder?
Providence has a good team too, as do Coachella Valley (Kraken), and Calgary (Flames). It’ll be fun to actually watch competitive hockey again, and a team that has a legitimate shot at a championship, unlike the slow disintegration of the once mighty Caps.
Bears forward lines are legit. There are gonna be a couple of good players sitting.
Been like that most of the season. Nelson sat Napravnik while he had an intact 4 game point streak. This team can roll 4 lines easy. My guess is Suzdalev and Trineyev and Persson are Black Aces, sit, watch and learn what North American pros do. Good learning experience.
So the Bears have two games this weekend, a week off, and several new players. Will be interesting to see who plays and where they play first playoff game.