Article By: Mike Peck
10/01/2010 12:55 PM - Chicago, Ill.- The Chicago Blackhawks have assigned forwards Kyle Beach, Igor Makarov, Brandon Pirri and Ben Smith, and defenseman Brian Connelly to the American Hockey League’s Rockford IceHogs.
The 2010-11 season marks the first full professional campaign for Beach, although the 6-3 winger spent two brief stints with Rockford the previous two seasons. After completing his junior career in the Western Hockey League last spring, Beach joined the IceHogs and led the club in postseason scoring, netting three goals last year.
The Kelowna, British Columbia native tallied a career-high 52 goals with the Spokane Chiefs (WHL) in 2009-10. Chicago’s first round selection (#11 overall) in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft also appeared in two regular season games and one postseason game with Rockford in 2008-09.
Makarov begins his first professional season in North America after playing the previous four campaigns in his native Russia. Last season, Makarov marked 5g-4a in 51 combined games between St. Petersburg and Moscow. The Moscow native was Chicago’s second round selection (#33 overall) in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.
Pirri returns to Rockford after getting recalled by the Blackhawks on Thursday. The rookie winger skated in Chicago’s 4-1 loss to St. Louis Thursday night and recorded 15:27 of ice time.
Smith also joined the IceHogs at the tail-end of last season following his national championship run with Boston College. In three Calder Cup Playoff games with Rockford, Smith tallied one goal. During his senior season at Boston College Smith totaled 16g-21a-37pts in 42 games.
Connelly is in his second full season at the professional level and ’10-11 will be his second campaign in Rockford. The Bloomington, Minn. native was Rockford’s rookie of the year in 2009-10 after scoring 4g-31a-35pts in 78 games from the blueline.
Rockford’s training camp roster now contains 24 players including 15 forwards, seven defensemen and two goalies.
Chicago’s training camp roster now stands at 26 active players, which includes 14 forwards, 9 defensemen and three goaltenders.
Next Home Game: Saturday, Oct. 9, 2010 vs. Manitoba Moose. The puck is set to drop at 4:35 p.m. The IceHogs begin the 2010-11 season against the Manitoba Moose and the first 5,000 fans will receive a 2010-11 IceHogs Magnet Schedule courtesy of U.S. Cellular, Dental Dimensions, Guerilla Graffix and the Illinois Pork Producers. Before the game on Saturday there is a fan festival from 1-4 p.m. where fans can enjoy music, food and entertainment.