HERSHEY, Pa. – A youth movement may be on the horizon for the Hershey Bears, and that future may be coming sooner rather than later as two prospects from the 2020 Washington Capitals draft class joined the Chocolate and White ahead of the 2022 Calder Cup Playoffs on Tuesday.
Bogdan Trineyev and Bear Hughes joined the Bears on amateur tryout agreements with both of their respective seasons concluded and will be eligible to play in Hershey during the 2022-23 season. The two forwards add speed and skill coming off of successful seasons in the WHL for Hughes and the KHL for Trineyev, and it’s possible they will factor into Hershey’s lineup with the playoffs starting Friday.
Trineyev, 20, signed an entry-level contract with Hershey’s parent club, the Washington Capitals, a day prior to this announcement with the contract kicking in for the 2022-23 season. This stint in Hershey for the postseason will be a preview of what’s to come as the 6’3, 198 pound forward spent time playing for Dynamo Moskva of the KHL as well as the KHL’s junior club team MHK Dynamo Moskva of the MHL. In the MHL, Trineyev compiled 18 points (three goals, 15 assists) in 21 games played, and has previously spent time with Russia’s U18 team in addition to winning a gold medal at the 2019 Hlinka Gretzky Cup and won the MHL championship during the 2020-21 season. Trineyev was selected in the fourth round, 117th overall by the Capitals during the 2020 draft.
Hughes, 20, recently completed his third season with the Spokane Chiefs of the WHL after skating with the Fargo Force of the USHL in 2020-21. The 6’2, 171 pound forward had a breakout 2021-22 campaign by recording 67 points (24 goals, 43 assists) in 64 games played with the Chiefs and served as captain of the squad, a role that represented the latest big step in an inspiring story from going unrated in the draft to eventually being selected in the fifth round, 148th overall by the Caps in 2020. He hasn’t signed an NHL contract like Trineyev, but his impressive conclusion to his junior season and he should be high on Washington’s list to sign. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him work his way into a lineup spot for the Bears.
The Bears have plenty of players in their lineup going into the start of their series with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, but there’s always an opportunity for some of the new faces to get into the lineup. Fellow rookie Benton Maass is a great example of this, as the blue liner worked his way into the lineup for Hershey’s last game of the season against the Syracuse Crunch. With the Bears still working their way back from a number of key injured players, though, including the likes of Matt Moulson, Brian Pinho, and more recently Shane Gersich. This always leaves room for young forwards particularly to make an immediate impact when given the chance in a similar vein to other young prospects like Ethen Frank and Julian Napravnik did coming from the NCAA ranks.
It adds an extra layer of intrigue for when the Bears take the ice on Friday in Game 1. Trineyev and Hughes join a lengthy list of prospects joining the organization in 2022-23 that include fellow 2020 draft choices forward Hendrix Lapierre and defenseman Vincent Iorio, and extend to Henry Rybinski, Garin Bjorklund, Martin Hugo Has, and Clay Stevenson, and those prospects will be discussed at length over the summer. Depending on how things shake out in Washington over the summer months, it looks like the Bears will be trending in a youthful direct when the next iteration of the team hits the ice in the fall.
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