Blackhawks assign Brandon Saad to juniors

Written By Sun-Times Wire Posted: 10/12/2011, 03:29pm

By Ben Meyer-Abbott

The Blackhawks assigned Brandon Saad to the Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League after practice on Wednesday.

Saad, the 43rd selection in this summer’s draft, made his NHL debut in the Hawks 2-1 loss Friday to the Dallas Stars. He had two shots in 13:05 of ice-time that game and one shot in 14:57 the next night against the Stars.

“It’s obvioulsy an adjustment going from the preseason to the regular season,” Saad said Wednesday before being assigned. “We have a great group of guys here and a great team and they’ve helped me out a lot.”

The Hawks had a nine-game window to start the season in which to assign Saad to a minor-league club and not use up a year on the three-year contract he signed at the end of training camp.

Saad talked about playing with that possibility looming before his first career game.

“You can’t worry about it too much,” he said at the time. “I’m here for a reason and just got to play my game and the rest will fall into place, whatever they decide to do.”

During his brief, two-game stint he played on the Hawks top two lines with Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa and Patrick Kane.

“He’s done some impressive things so far,” Kane said Wednesday about Saad before the move. “He had a great preseason and played well in the intersqaud games. I think that as time goes a long in the regular season, things get a bit tougher and I’m sure he’ll realize that but so far he hasn’t made any mistakes.”