The New Jersey Devils recall center Justin Dowling from their AHL affiliate Utica Comets, the team announced on Sunday. Captain Nico Hischier is sidelined with an injury. As a result, he won’t participate in New Jerser’s tilt today against the Minnesota Wild. No timetable for Hischier’s return was disclosed. However, Dowling’s recall indicates the Devils might need an extra body around, especially before they head out for a four-game road trip.
The Devils also placed D Colin Miller (lower body) on injured reserve, retro to 10/19.
Dowling (33) was referred to as the Comets “top center” by Utica head coach Kevin Dinnen on Saturday. Through four games of the Comets regular season, Dowling registered three assists.
It’s just Dowling’s first season in the Devils system, however, he has NHL experience. Previously, the Cochrane, Canada native spent time in the Calgary Flames, Dallas Stars, and Vancouver Canucks system. At the NHL level, Dowling has played in 98 career NHL games. Over that span, he’s scored six goals and 18 points in regular-season action. Dowling also has 15 games of Stanley Cup Playoff experience, registering two assists with the Stars in 2018-19.
Most of Dowling’s career has been spent down at the AHL level, however. Between the Abbotsford Heat, Texas Stars, and Abbotsford Canucks, Dowling has played in 513 AHL contests scoring 115 goals and 252 assists. Moreover, in 60 career Calder Cup Playoff games, Dowling has totaled 11 goals and 31 assists.
As a veteran in the AHL, Dowling claimed the Calder Cup Championship in the 2013-14 season playing with the Stars. He scored four goals and 10 assists in 14 playoff contests to help the Stars win the AHL championship.
With Hischier on the shelf for an undisclosed timeframe, Dowling joins the Devils to potentially get another taste of the NHL.
The Devils signed Dowling to a one-year, two-way deal worth $775,000 over the summer.