Posted by: kristagolden | November 17, 2011

Rusty goes down, Ben comes back

Well, this is a fine way to start the Circus Trip.

I had an inkling when I’d heard that Rostislav Olesz was put on waivers yesterday that something big was going to happen. You don’t do that when you’re on the road (at least, I wouldn’t think so). But from what I’ve heard, when Coach Q says a player’s doing “okay” or “just okay,” that means he ain’t happy with them. This was the evaluation Rusty kept getting from Coach, and as much as they tried to give him ice time to improve and tried to work him hard during practice, it just wasn’t happening.

It's like when my teachers would give out the NI grade in elementary school: needs improvement.

So on waivers he went. This then started the whispers that Ben Smith, the sweetie who scored the goal in overtime and forced a Game 7 in last year’s playoffs, would be called up from the Rockford IceHogs to play with the boys again. The last time we heard from Ben, he was still reeling from the nasty concussion given him by Detroit’s Brendan Smith in preseason. He was sent to Rockford to recover and work on his game, and from what I’ve read, his game has really sparkled. Of course, the fact that he was a healthy scratch for the Icehogs’ game last night just fanned the rumor flames.

Rusty cleared waivers today, and the Blackhawks sent him down to Rockford. Like exchanging one item for another, Ben was officially called up to Calgary and will most likely start on Friday. Maybe that’s a good thing – with Michael Frolik listed as questionable for the game, we need someone that we can rely on out there. If he can be as good as he was last season – and I have no doubt that he will – the Circus Trip will be a good one for the boys.

Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back!

– Krista

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