The Detroit Red Wings' AHL affiliate Grand Rapids Griffins lead their best-of-five series against the Milwaukee Admirals 2-0, and the Griffins are going to be getting some hyped Red Wings prospects joining their ranks. The NHL team today assigned forward Evgeny Svechnikov and defenseman Joe Hicketts to the Griffins from their respective junior hockey clubs.
Hicketts has already been a black ace for the Griffins, but at this juncture, it's uncertain either one of them will draw into the lineup right away. For Svechnikov, even if he doesn't get into the lineup for a game, just the AHL playoff practices will be his first taste of professional hockey in North America.
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Detroit Red Wings have reassigned forward Evgeny Svechnikov (ehv-GEH-nee svech-NIH-kawv) to the Grand Rapids Griffins from the QMJHL’s Cape Breton Screaming Eagles and defenseman Joe Hicketts to the Griffins from the WHL’s Victoria Royals.
Detroit’s first choice (19th overall) in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, Svechnikov, 19, has played in 105 games for Cape Breton over the last two seasons and recorded 157 points (64-93—157). His 79 points (32-47—79) in 50 games during the 2015-16 campaign ranked second on the team and tied for 18th in the QMJHL, while his 47 assists placed 17th and his 13 power play goals tied for eighth. Svechnikov’s 78 points (32-46—78) during the 2014-15 season landed him a spot on the QMJHL All-Rookie Team.
A native of Neftegorsk, Russia, Svechnikov skated in seven games for his country during the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship and helped the Russians win the silver medal.
Prior to his North American debut, the 6-foot-3, 205-pound forward played two seasons in Russia. From 2012-14, he appeared in six games (2-2—4) for Irbis Kazan Jr., 63 games (23-22—45) for Bars Kazan Jr., and three games (0-0—0) for Ak Bars Kazan of the KHL.
Hicketts, 19, signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Red Wings in September 2014 after attending Detroit’s development camp and the NHL Prospects Tournament in Traverse City. In 59 games with Victoria this season, the 5-foot-9, 175-pound blueliner ranked seventh among WHL defensemen in scoring with 61 points (8-53—61) in 59 games, while posting 44 penalty minutes and a plus-38 rating.
In 224 career games with the Royals from 2012-16, Hicketts has amassed 173 points (32-141—173), 149 PIM and a plus-69 rating. Hicketts also served as a black ace for the Griffins during the 2015 Calder Cup Playoffs when Grand Rapids advanced to the Western Conference Finals.
A native of Kamloops, British Columbia, Hicketts has represented Canada on the international stage a number of times. Hicketts tallied a goal and two assists (1-2—3) as Canada finished sixth in the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship. He also won a gold medal on his country’s home ice at the 2015 World Junior Championship.
Grand Rapids leads Milwaukee 2-0 in the best-of-five Central Division Semifinals. Game 3 is set for 7 p.m. on Tuesday at Van Andel Arena.
Tickets for Games 3 (Tuesday, April 26) and 4 (Wednesday, April 27 – if necessary) of the division semifinals at Van Andel Arena are now on sale at all Star Tickets locations, including The Zone, online through griffinshockey.com, by phone through Star Tickets at (800) 585-3737, or via the Griffins app for iPhone or Android.
Available for all playoff home games, Playoff 4-Packs include four or more tickets at a savings of $3 per ticket plus no service fees. To purchase a Playoff 4-Pack, visit griffinshockey.com/playoffs or call (616) 774-4585 ext. 2.
Fans who want to experience every Griffins game at Van Andel Arena during the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs can now purchase a Griffins Playoff Pass. Enjoy the same great seat at significant savings plus the convenience of the "pay-as-we-play" method of payment. To reserve your Griffins Playoff Pass, please call (616) 774-4585 ext. 2.