Devante Smith-Pelly is back… sort of!
Tuesday, the popular forward was documented for the first time as a member of the Hershey Bears.
The Bears’ Twitter account captured him smiling in a candid photo.
— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) February 26, 2019
DSP hasn’t been seen on the ice since February 20 when he left the ice early in Toronto after being put on waivers by Capitals GM Brian MacLellan.
Smith-Pelly’s father was in the stands for his son’s hometown skate. Sportsnet reported that being waived was a tough moment for the Stanley Cup hero.
“He has to get his game back to where it was at last year in playoff time, and he’s someone who’s going to have to find that down in Hershey,” Capitals head coach Todd Reirden said.
Thursday, DSP cleared waivers. Saturday night, the forward reported to the Hershey Bears so that he could travel with the team for their three-game road trip.
While Smith-Pelly is disappointed to be in the AHL, he may not stay there long, as NHL rosters can be expanded now that the trade deadline is over.
MacLellan on DSP: "I think he didn't have the best training camp, didn't start off right. Maybe expectations were that he was going to pick up where he left off in the playoffs and he struggled getting back to that level. Doesn't mean we can't bring him back up here at the end."
— Isabelle Khurshudyan (@ikhurshudyan) February 25, 2019
Smith-Pelly will likely suit up for Hershey against Hartford Wednesday night. DSP hasn’t played a game in the AHL since April 4, 2014, as a member of the Norfolk Admirals – the Anaheim Ducks affiliate. He scored 27 goals in 55 games during the 2013-14 AHL season.
— Zack Fisch (@zackfisch) February 26, 2019
Headline photo: @TheHersheyBears
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