Finally, the Nashville Predators have added experience.
Forward Jed Ortmeyer cleared re-entry waivers and was recalled from Milwaukee on Thursday. The 30-year-old has played 228 career NHL contests, including 51 for Nashville last season.
He will be in the lineup Friday when the Predators play at Chicago (7:30 p.m., Fox Sports Net) and will replace Antti Pihlstrom (upper body injury) on the roster.
“It helps,” coach Barry Trotz said.. “(Ortmeyer) is a guy I have a lot of trust in. He gets an opportunity to come back up and play. … We’re fortunate that (he) is there and fortunate that someone didn’t pick him up.”
Ortmeyer sustained a knee injury on Feb. 23, 2008, which caused him to miss the rest of the 2007-08 season and the first 24 games of the current one. Once healthy, he was sent to Milwaukee on Dec. 3 and had 23 points (10 goals, 13 assists) in 55 games.
“He can kill penalties,” Trotz said. “He checks really well, he has experience and he’s a strong guy on the wall. He’s going to get an opportunity to play his fair share and probably in some pretty important roles at this time for us.”
Pihlstrom is expected to miss at least the next two games – Friday at Chicago and Saturday at home against Columbus. His status will be reevaluated Monday.
Ortmeyer is the fourth Nashville player recalled due to injury since March 17. None of the previous three – Patric Hornqvist, Cal O’Reilly and Mike Santorelli – had more than 20 games of NHL experience prior to their recall and all are 23 or younger.