The Columbus Blue Jackets have activated left wing Alexandre Texier off Injured Reserve and recalled defenseman Adam Clendening and goaltender Matiss Kivlenieks from the Cleveland Monsters, Columbus' American Hockey League affiliate, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today. The team has also assigned goaltender Elvis Merzlikins to the Monsters.
Texier, 20, has missed the past four games with a knee injury suffered on October 26 at Philadelphia. He has registered two goals and an assist for three points with four penalty minutes and an even plus/minus rating in 11 contests with Columbus this season. A native of St. Martin D'heres, France, Texier has tallied 3-1-4, four penalty minutes and a +3 plus/minus rating in 13 career games with the team since making his NHL debut at the end of the 2018-19 campaign. He collected 27-36-63 in 108 career Liiga games with KalPa from 2017-19, including 14-27-41 in 55 appearances in 2018-19. He was the club's second round pick, 45th overall, at the 2017 NHL Draft.
Clendening, 27, has registered 4-20-24 with 49 penalty minutes and a +11 plus/minus rating in 90 career NHL games with the Blue Jackets, Arizona Coyotes, New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks. He skated in four regular season games with Columbus in 2018-19 before making his Stanley Cup Playoffs debut and collecting 0-1-1 in seven postseason outings. A native of Niagara Falls, New York, he has tallied 34-171-205, 377 penalty minutes and a +54 plus/minus rating in 317 career AHL contests, including 2-5-7, 12 penalty minutes and is +5 in 11 games with the Monsters in 2019-20. Originally Chicago's second round selection, 36th overall, at the 2011 NHL Draft, he was signed by Columbus on July 1, 2018.
Kivlenieks, 23, is 5-1-1 with a 2.37 goals-against average and .909 save percentage in seven appearances with the Monsters in 2019-20. The Riga, Latvia native has posted a 23-26-6 record, 3.21 GAA, .889 SV% and two shutouts in 64 career AHL outings with Cleveland since making his professional debut in 2017-18. Signed by Columbus to an entry level contract on May 25, 2017, he was named the United States Hockey League Player of the Year and Goaltender of the Year in 2016-17 after leading the Sioux City Musketeers to the Anderson Cup (regular season championship) with a 36-7-6 record, 1.85 GAA, .932 SV% and five shutouts.
Merzlikins, 25, made his NHL debut on October 5 at Pittsburgh and is 0-1-2 with a 3.91 GAA and .882 SV% in four outings with the Blue Jackets in 2019-20. A native of Riga, Latvia, he posted a 105-79-7 record with a 2.68 GAA and .920 SV% in 210 career games with HC Lugano in the Swiss League (NLA) from 2013-19 and won the Jacques Plante Trophy as the league's Goaltender of the Year in 2015-16 and 2017-18. The Jackets' third round pick, 76th overall, at the 2014 NHL Draft went 22-18-0 with a 2.44 GAA, .921 SV% and a career-high five shutouts in 43 outings with HC Lugano in 2018-19.
The Blue Jackets return to action on Thursday when they visit the Coyotes. Game time from Gila River Arena is 9 p.m. ET. The game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports Ohio and the FOX Sports Go app. Coverage begins at 8:30 p.m. with the "Blue Jackets Live" pre-game show. The game will also be broadcast on the Eldorado Gaming Scioto Downs Blue Jackets Radio Network, including flagship station Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan.