A call-up can be an excellent motivator. Aside from stating the obvious, even a cup of coffee with the NHL club, can rejuvenate a player, toiling away on countless bus trips. Not that Joe Whitney needed the extra motivation but it is nice to know the parent club is watching. So too was the American Hockey league, which named the Albany Devils forward the CCM/AHL Player of the Week, ending January 4, 2015.
Leading the A-Devils in scoring in each of the past three seasons, along with his club best 32 points, this season, Whitney has been revving it up for the Albany and New Jersey Devils of late. On New Year’s Eve at Detroit, Whitney netted his first career NHL goal, against the Red Wings. Book-ending that was a torrid stretch in the “A.”
— Albany Devils (@AlbanyDevils) January 5, 2015
Before his call-up, facing the Northeast Division leading Springfield Falcons, the speedy Whitney scored a lightning quick, 4-3 winner. Just 34 seconds into the extra session, Whitney bested Oscar Dansk and sent the Albany fans home happy. Whitney also added a pair of helpers in that contest, garnering First Star honors from the attending media.
Ultimately it was Whitney’s weekend work of tormenting the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, which allowed him to come away with Player of the Week honors. During a 7-4 Albany victory, Whitney erupted for another three-point evening, potting a goal and notching a pair of helpers, again capturing First Star honors.
In a 4-3 losing effort, the next day, Whitney registered a goal and an assist, earning a Second Star mention.
— American Hockey League (@TheAHL) January 5, 2015
On the year, Whitney is sixth in the AHL in scoring and could be in line for a trip to Utica, NY, for the AHL All-Star Game. In any event, the accolades continue to accumulate for Whitney.
Michael Gwizdala covers the New York Islanders for The Hockey Writers. Michael is also an Associate Producer at WNYT NewsChannel 13. Additionally, Michael was once a Media Relations intern for the AHL Albany River Rats. Michael is a graduate of The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY.