Set to become first Danish-born player to appear in an NHL game
The New York Islanders have recalled center Frans Nielsen from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League. Nielsen, a 2002 third round draft pick of the Islanders, is poised to become the first Danish-born player to ever appear in an NHL game.
In 33 games with Bridgeport this season, Nielsen has scored 10 goals with 13 assists for 23 points and 4 penalty minutes. He also had a +3 plus/minus rating. Nielsen was signed by the Islanders to a two-year contract on May 15, 2006.
The 6-0, 195-pound Nielsen was born in Denmark on April 24, 1984. Quickly out-growing the competition in his native country by the age of 17, Nielsen transferred to the Swedish Elite League. He spent his first four SEL seasons in the Malmo IF Redhawks organization before joining Timra IF for the 2005-06 season. In his 216-game SEL career, Nielsen recorded 25 goals and 34 assists for 59 points and 66 penalty minutes.
Nielsen was recalled because forward Shawn Bates is out day-to-day after suffering a hand injury during Thursday night's game in New Jersey.
In other news, the Islanders announced that defenseman Freddy Meyer (back) has been cleared to play. As a result, the team reassigned defenseman Allan Rourke to Bridgeport today. Rourke appeared in the Islanders' last four games and was scoreless with two penalty minutes.