Friesen agreed to terms with Swedish club Leksands IF on Monday. Friesen, who was selected in the sixth round of the 2010 NHL Draft, made just one appearance for the Canucks during the 2015-16 campaign -- he logged 11:43 of ice time, one shot on goal and a minus-2 rating. The 26-year-old center did some solid scoring in the OHL, including racking up 71 points in 62 outings in his final season with the Niagara IceDogs, but he couldn't secure a regular NHL role.
Friesen has been assigned to AHL Utica. The 25-year-old depth forward, who appeared in his first NHL game on Feb. 15 against the Wild, thus returns to the AHL, where he has notched 18 points and 55 penalty minutes in 41 games for Utica this season.
Friesen will make his NHL debut Monday against the Wild, Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province reports. At 25 years of age, the former sixth-round pick will finally get his first taste of the NHL after posting 18 points through 41 contests with the team's AHL Utica affiliate this season. He slotted in as the left winger on the fourth line during Sunday's practice, and his fantasy upside remains minimal with the limited action that comes in that role.
Friesen was recalled by the Canucks on Wednesday. Friesen will provide the Canucks with additional depth up front while Brandon Sutter recovers from the broken jaw he sustained in Tuesday's matchup with Colorado. Friesen has notched 18 points (eight goals, 10 assists) in 40 games with AHL Utica this season, and will likely slot in as a bottom-six forward if he's able to crack the lineup during his stay with the big club.
Alex Friesen signed a two-year, $575,000 contract extension with the Canucks on Monday, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports.
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